Jio is at the centre of the Indian tycoon’s ambition to transform his energy conglomerate into a homegrown technology behemoth — something on the lines of China’s Alibaba Group Holding.
is in advanced talks to buy a $4 billion stake in Mukesh Ambani’s technology venture, people familiar with the matter said, seeking to join rival Facebook
in the chase for growth in a promising internet market.
The Mountain View, California-based titan has been discussing the investment in Reliance Industries’ digital arm, Jio Platforms, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. An announcement could come as soon as the next few weeks, according to the people.
Jio is at the centre of the Indian tycoon’s ambition to transform his energy conglomerate into a homegrown technology behemoth — something on the lines of China’s Alibaba
Group Holding. The venture has turned into a magnet for Silicon Valley investors, attracting almost $16 billion from Facebook
to KKR & Co. in the past three months. Should the talks with Google
result in a deal, that would further burnish Jio’s credentials in its push to upend online retail, content streaming, digital payments, education and health care in a market of more than a billion people.
Global tech leaders from Facebook
to Intel Corp.
are looking for multiple ways to grab a slice of the action in the South Asian country, where millions of first-time internet users are added every month. Jio Platforms, which boasts almost 400 million users through its wireless network, offers the largest base of such users who are increasingly buying merchandise online and downloading music and video, using cheap phones and Jio’s own cut-price data services. An arm of Qualcomm
Inc. was the latest in Jio’s growing list of investors, who also include Intel Capital, Silver Lake and Mubadala Investment. As of July 12, Reliance had sold 25.2 per cent of Jio, valuing the venture at $65 billion.