Vijay Shekhar Sharma reflects on Paytm's journey and lessons learned at the 7th JIIF Foundation Day.

My Company is Like My Daughter: Reflections and Lessons from Paytm Founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma

Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma recently shared personal and professional insights regarding the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) action on Paytm Payments Bank. The RBI’s directive earlier this year, citing “material supervisory concerns” and non-compliance with regulations, had a significant impact on Sharma and his company.

Vijay Shekhar Sharma reflects on Paytm’s journey and lessons learned at the 7th JIIF Foundation Day.

Emotional Setback and Professional Lessons

During the 7th JIIF Foundation Day, Sharma candidly discussed the emotional toll and professional lessons learned from the RBI’s restrictions. He compared the setback to a personal crisis, likening his company to his daughter. “As a founder, metaphorically speaking… my company is like my daughter… as a company we were getting mature… it is just as if a daughter who is a school topper has met with an accident on the way to an entrance test,” Sharma expressed.

Professionally, Sharma acknowledged the company could have handled its responsibilities better. “We should have done better, there are no secrets about it. We had responsibilities, we should have fulfilled them much better,” he admitted. The RBI’s action forced Paytm Payments Bank to halt accepting new deposits, leading to significant operational disruptions.

Reflections on Going Public and Market Dynamics

Sharma also reflected on the challenges and responsibilities of being a publicly listed company. Paytm’s parent company, One97 Communications, went public in 2021, facing a 27% drop from its issue price on the day of listing. The stock has continued to decline, trading at Rs 438 per share, a 36.6% drop over the past six months.

Despite the stock market fluctuations, Sharma emphasized focusing on the company’s fundamentals and business dynamics. “Public markets matter because it is a responsibility… but public markets are beyond you, they have many more variables and limitations,” he noted. Sharma shared that the experience brought maturity and a deeper understanding of market dynamics, learning from investors like Masayoshi Son, who have navigated similar challenges.

Personal Ambitions and Future Goals

Looking ahead, Sharma expressed his ambition to build a $100-billion company and establish Paytm as a globally recognized Indian brand. He believes listing the company brought added responsibility and maturity, comparing it to the life milestone of marriage. “It is a great opportunity to be listed… ultimately it differentiates the men from the boys,” he said.

Sharma remains optimistic about the company’s future, confident that hard work and strong business fundamentals will eventually be recognized by the public markets. “We work hard in the business market, and the public market will understand. In due course, all the things that may get discounted do get sorted out,” he concluded.


Vijay Shekhar Sharma’s reflections highlight the emotional and professional complexities of leading a company through regulatory challenges and market fluctuations. His commitment to learning from setbacks and focusing on long-term goals exemplifies resilience and dedication to Paytm’s mission. As Paytm continues to navigate its path, Sharma’s insights offer valuable lessons on responsibility, growth, and the relentless pursuit of excellence.


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