US investment firm Vista Equity injects nearly 114 billion rupees ($ 1.5 billion) into Jio Platforms, the digital technology branch of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s sprawling conglomerate, Reliance Industries.
Reliance said on Friday that the deal values Jio at around $ 65 billion.
“Like our other partners, Vista also shares the same vision with us to continue to grow and transform the Indian digital ecosystem for the benefit of all Indians,” Ambani said in a statement.
The investment marks the third injection of branded liquidity for Ambani’s growing technology empire in less than three weeks. Facebook (( invested $ 5.7 billion in Jio Platforms in late April and private equity firm Silver Lake followed earlier this week with $ 750 million. )
With a 2.3% stake, Vista would be the third largest investor in Jio Platforms, behind Reliance Industries and Facebook ((. The agreement is subject to regulatory approval. )
Jio Platforms has several services under its umbrella, including Reliance Jio, the mobile network that has taken over India since its launch less than four years ago. The carrier has accumulated 388 million users, bankrupt Ambani’s brother and rival, and forced other local operators to merge. Jio Platforms also includes a family of apps where users can stream movies, buy online, text, read news, and more.
Vista Equity, which has more than $ 57 billion in capital investment, invests in software, data and technology companies.
Robert Smith, president and CEO of Vista, said in a statement that the investment in Jio will contribute to “exponential growth in connectivity across India”.
India is in the middle of an Internet boom. It is the world’s second largest smartphone market and has hundreds of millions of users eager to participate in the growing digital economy.
And there is still a lot of room to grow: almost 600 million people in India do not yet have access to the Internet.
That’s why the tastes of Ali Baba ((, )Amazon ((, )Google ((, )Tencent ((, )SoftBank (( and countless other tech giants have injected billions of dollars into the Indian Internet scene. )