Paytm Mall sacks 10 staff, delists 100 vendors

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BENGALURU: Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma (in picture) said 10 employees in its e-commerce business, Paytm Mall, were sacked while 100 vendors were delisted from the marketplace post an audit conducted by EY. The investigation concluded that there was a Rs 5-10 crore fraud in the company.

Sharma said the audit firm had been engaged with the e-commerce firm from before and wasn’t appointed specifically to investigate a fraud. Earlier, media reports surfaced about employees in Paytm Mall siphoning off cashbacks into their own bank accounts in collusion with vendors on the platform. The company had said that Paytm Mall was partnering with EY, which will undertake frequent audits, to identify, analyse and monitor various in-built and outsourced processes.

“Post Diwali, what my team saw was that there were some small sellers who were getting large percentage of the cashbacks and we as a team asked our auditors to do a deeper audit. We found out that there were some sellers who were colluding with some employees at the junior level and they, sort of, will get more cashback on their products. We blocked those sellers and fired those employees,” said Sharma, who is also the chairman and CEO of One97 Communications, the parent firm of Paytm.

Paytm Mall has raised $650 million in a span of two years from Alibaba, SoftBank and SAIF Partners. However, despite the backing of heavyweight investors, its e-commerce strategy has been largely dependent on the cashbacks.

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