Shares of One 97 Communications (Paytm) closed in the red after Chinese billionaire Jack Ma-owned AntFin (Netherlands) Holdings BV offloaded shares at a discount to market price on Friday.

AntFin had sold 3.58 per cent stake or 2.27 crore shares at ₹895.20 a piece, worth ₹2,031 crore through bulk deal on the BSE. The major buyers include Societe General - 59.87 lakh shares and Morgan Stanley Asia Singapore Pte - 39.96 lakh shares, while the details of other buyers were not immediately available.

In a volatile trade, shares of Paytm touched a 52-week high of ₹939 a piece and crashed six per cent to the day’s low of ₹888, but it recovered marginally to close at ₹899 on the prospect of its inclusion in global indices.

Free float increases

The recent sale of the company’s shares by erstwhile investors has increased the free float of shares and this may find it a place in the global indices.

Abhilash Pagaria, Head, Nuvama Alternative & Quantitative Research, said FTSE Index provider should include additional floating shares in the next three-four days and this is expected to generate a passive flow of about $7 million.

Currently, he said MSCI uses lower free float due to delayed June quarter shareholding reporting. If Paytm updates September shareholding before early October, it could qualify for November MSCI Standard Index inclusion with potential influx of $145 million, since there is good interest seen in this company.

Shares of One 97 Communications, the parent company of Paytm, has jumped over 73 per cent so far in this year.

The reduction of shareholding by Antfin and erstwhile promoter of Paytm, Vijay Shekar Sharma, increasing stake to 19.42 per cent will remove the overhang of Chinese shareholding.

Selling continues

As of the June quarter-end, Antfin owned about 23.79 per cent stake in Paytm. Earlier this month, Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma had entered into an agreement to acquire 10.3 per cent through an off-market transfer from Antfin, which is an affiliate of Chinese conglomerate Alibaba.

In June quarter, Paytm reported consolidated net loss of ₹357 crore against a loss of ₹645 crore. Its EBITDA before ESOP improved to ₹84 crore, with margins at 4 per cent, driven by an increase in contribution margin and operating leverage.