In a strategic move to tap into India’s internet boom, Facebook announced its purchase of a 9.9% stake in Jio Platforms for $5.7 billion. The target is the digital technology arm of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani's conglomerate, Reliance Industries. This is the largest ever foreign direct investment in a tech company to date for India.
Mobile network Reliance Jio, with more than 388 million active users, falls within Reliance Industries’ portfolio of businesses. It houses multi-functional apps users can access to stream movies, read news and shop online.
Commenting on the deal, Reliance Industries' Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani said: “The combined power of Jio's world-class digital connectivity platform and Facebook’s intimate relationship with the Indian people will offer innovative new solutions to each one of you."
Indian firms AZB & Partners and Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas acted as counsel to Reliance Industries and Facebook, respectively. Also instructing Facebook were international law firms Hogan Lovells, Gibson Dunn, Fenwick & West and White & Case. Davis Polk & Wardwell represented Reliance Industries on US law.