Zomato, with a hefty cash warchest, eyes another strategic acquisition in Paytm’s movie & events ticketing business

Zomato has confirmed — which was earlier reported by several outlets — that it is indeed exploring a potential acquisition of Paytm’s movie and events ticketing business. And while there is no confirmation from either parties on the deal amount, several reports have pegged the deal to be valued in the vicinity of ₹1700 crore (~$195 Mn).

“We acknowledge that we are in discussions with Paytm for the aforementioned transaction, however, no binding decision has been taken at this stage that would warrant a Board approval and subsequent disclosure in accordance with applicable law,” Zomato said in the filing.

If concluded, this would add some much needed cash in the bank for Paytm, which has been in a recover mode every since India’s central bank RBI, jolted it with a ban on its payments bank business, amid several irregularities in operations. That led Paytm to frantically look for new banking partners, in order to keep its existing customer base intact, and not migrate to competing UPI platforms, such as Google’s GPay, Flipkart-owned PhonePe, among others.

The acquisiton would include both Paytm Movies and Paytm Insider, the latter of which was itself a result of an acquisition and is the entity which handles live events ticketing. Zomato has been known to make strategic and commercially successful acquisitions, most notable of them being BlinkIt, and this seems to be along those lines. The food delivery giant is looking to expand offerings under an already established though small, events ticketing business.