Published On: Wed, Jul 15th, 2020

Google to acquire stake in Reliance Jio Platforms for $4.5bn

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Internet giant Google has agreed to acquire a stake of 7.73% in Jio Platforms, the digital services platform of Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries, for INR 33.73 billion ($4.5 billion).

Google’s investment values Jio Platforms at an equity value of INR 4.36 lakh crore.

Through the latest transaction, Reliance Industries has secured a total investment of INR 1,520 billion ($20.23 billion) for the Indian digital services company.

Mukesh Ambani – Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, said: “Google has empowered millions of Indians to access helpful information and, like Jio, is a force for change and innovation. We welcome Google onboard and are excited about our partnership for what it can deliver to Indians, from universalising Internet usage to deepening the new digital economy and providing a prime mover to India’s economic growth.

“Together, we hope to play a strong facilitative role in the transformative journey of building a new, Digital India.”

Reliance Industries expects the investment from Google will expand the digitization benefits throughout India.

Furthermore, Jio Platforms and Google have forged a commercial agreement for the joint development of an entry-level smartphone with optimizations to the Android operating system and the Play Store.

Google to acquire stake in Reliance Jio Platforms for $4.5bn

Google to acquire stake in Reliance Jio Platforms for $4.5bn. Photo courtesy of The Pancake of Heaven!/Wikipedia.org.

Sundar Pichai – CEO of Google and Alphabet, said: “Reliance Industries, and Jio Platforms in particular, deserve a good deal of credit for India’s digital transformation. The pace and scale of digital transformation in India is hugely inspiring for us and reinforces our view that building products for India first helps us build better products for users everywhere.

“Google is proud to invest ₹ 33,737 crore into Jio. I am excited that our joint collaboration will focus on increasing access for hundreds of millions of Indians who don’t currently own a smartphone while improving the mobile experience for all.”

The deal is subject to receipt of regulatory and other mandated customary approvals.

Morgan Stanley is serving as the financial advisor to Reliance Industries, while AZB & Partners and Davis Polk & Wardwell are the legal counsels. For Google, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer US and J. Sagar Associates are the legal advisors.

Earlier this week, Qualcomm Ventures agreed to invest $97m in Jio Platforms for a stake of 0.15%.

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