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Alibaba sells nearly half of its direct stake in Paytm

The move is seen as an indication of the company exiting Indian market

Alibaba had earlier sold its shares in BigBasket and Zomato | Reuters Alibaba had earlier sold its shares in BigBasket and Zomato | Reuters

Chinese conglomerate Alibaba is learnt to have sold a 3.1 per cent stake - nearly half of its direct shareholding - in digital financial services firm One97 Communications in an indication of exiting the Indian market, sources said on Wednesday.

However, Alibaba group firm Ant Financial has not diluted its stake in Paytm and continues to hold 25 per cent of the company.

"There was a big movement in Paytm's stock today as a block deal took place where 2,59,930 shares were sold at Rs 535.90 worth 13.93 crore rupees. Chinese group Alibaba is behind the deal, selling up to 3.1 per cent of its total equity of about 6 per cent," a source closely watching the development at Paytm told PTI.

The development follows Alibaba's stake sale in BigBasket and Zomato.

"Alibaba seems to be making an exit from India as it has sold shares in other investments," the source said.

The company's shares closed at Rs 542.25 apiece on the BSE.

Paytm's shares have been gaining after its associate Paytm Payments Bank received the RBI approval to appoint Surinder Chawla as its Managing Director and CEO.

Email queries sent to Alibaba and One97 Communications did not elicit any immediate reply.

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