Alphabet’s Google is set to buy 7.7% stake for $4.5 billion in Jio Platforms. By investing in shares, Google will join the board alongside another big Facebook. India’s highly-valued company, Reliance is run by Mukesh Ambani, who has now sold nearly 33% of Jio Platforms.
The platform houses telecoms, music, and movie apps venture Jio Infocomm for 1.52 trillion rupees. Facebook went onboard onto the firm around the end of April. On Wednesday, the announcement for the latest investment arrives just days after Alphabet said that they will invest $10 billion in India.
At the company’s annual shareholders meeting hosted via a webcast, Mukesh Ambani, Reliance Chairman said “As we end our current cycle of capital raising, we are delighted to welcome another strategic partner into Jio.” Reportedly, Google will gain a seat on the board of Jio Platforms as a part of the transaction.
The deal will bolster the ambitions of Reliance, such as using solutions similar to Amazon’s voice assistant, building smart homes, security systems, and connected cars. According to Ambani, Google and Jio will partner to build a low-cost 4G or even 5G smartphone for India. This move will get tens of millions of Indians to use mobile internet for the first time.
Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said in a video message, “Through this partnership with Jio Platforms we see the chance to have an even greater impact than either company could have alone.” Adding that the Jio investment was “the first and the biggest” investment Google would make via the $10 billion funds.
Jio Infocomm is India’s largest mobile carrier and has a user base of more than 387 million. Its help can widen Google’s reach in the country where the internet is used by 500 million of its 1.3 billion populations. Moreover, Reliance has also won the backing of Intel Corp and Qualcomm Inc for its Jio Platforms. Through this, the company has built an in-house 5G solution and is ready to roll out 5G services.