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A sadhu, or Hindu holy man, in Allahabad, India, pays a merchant using Paytm. The mobile payments company has roughly 350 million users on its platform.   © Reuters
Startups in Asia

Buffett's Indian pick Paytm aims to build financial-services empire

Digital payments startup looks to profit by bringing small shopkeepers online

ROSEMARY MARANDI, Nikkei staff writer | India

MUMBAI -- Vijay Shekhar Sharma is used to dealing with skeptics. The 39-year-old founder of Paytm, India's biggest mobile payments business, was repeatedly turned away when he first sought backing for his startup.

"You are a great technology person but you have never done a consumer (business)," he was told. In the end, he managed to convince a group of investors who gave him $1 million and six months to prove himself.

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