Reliance Jio receives investment of $5.7 billion from Facebook : Facebook becomes largest minority shareholder
BENGALURU: Facebook will buy a 10% stake in the digital business of Reliance Industries for $5.7 billion, as the social media firm looks to leverage its highly popular WhatsApp chat service to offer digital payment services.
The deal will help the Reliance Industries cut debt that has piled up in its expensive push to secure top spot for its Jio.
WhatsApp is trying to secure approval to roll out its digital payment service in India, which will see it compete in a crowded market with the likes of Google Pay and Paytm. The approval to expand beyond the beta launch hasn’t come through yet, a Facebook spokesman said.
The messaging service has 400 million users in India, its biggest market, reaching nearly 80% of smartphone users in the country. The deal will also help the social media giant leverage WhatsApp to partner with Reliance’s e-commerce marketplace JioMart, that connects small businesses to customers.
Facebook founder CEO Mark Zuckerberg said :
“(India) is in the middle of a major digital transformation and organizations like Jio have played a big part in getting hundreds of millions of Indian people and small businesses online,”