Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), Jio Platforms Ltd., and Facebook announced on Wednesday that there was an agreement between them. Under this agreement, Facebook will invest Rs 43,574 crore in Jio platforms. With this investment from Facebook, the pre-money enterprise value of Jio platforms is estimated at Rs 4.62 lakh crore. Facebook is buying a 9.9% stake in Jio platforms through this investment. Reliance Industries said that with this investment, there has been a commercial partnership agreement between Jio platforms, Reliance Retail, and Facebook's WhatsApp app. This will help in enhancing Reliance Retail's new commerce business on the Jiomart platform through WhatsApp. Also, small businesses will be promoted on WhatsApp.
Mukesh Ambani, chairman, and managing director, Reliance Industries, said, "On the strength of Jio's world-class digital connectivity platform and the shared strength of Facebook's close relationship with the Indian people, we will bring new and innovative solutions for each one of you. In the near future, JioMart, Jio, which is Jio's new digital commerce platform and WhatsApp together, will enable about 3 crore small Indian grocery stores to transact digitally. The shopkeeper will be able to make digital transactions with his customers. This means that you will be able to order and deliver daily goods from all the local shops. This will also give small grocery shoppers a chance to develop their businesses. Also, by using digital technology, they can create new employment opportunities.
On the deal, Reliance Industries said that it is the world's most substantial investment for short participation in a technology company, and India's technology sector has the largest foreign direct investment (FDI). With this investment of Facebook, Jio platforms have joined the top five listed companies in a period of just three and a half years to start commercial services in terms of price-wise market capitalization.
On the partnership with Facebook, Mukesh Ambani said, "In 2016, when Reliance launched Jio, we took the dream of India's digital Sarvodaya-India's inclusive digital upliftment. The objective was to improve the quality of life of every individual in India and to include India as the world's leading digital society. On behalf of Reliance, we all welcome Facebook as a long-term partner. The partnership will bring about a major change in India's digital ecosystem and benefit all Indians.'
The transaction between Facebook and Jio platforms is subject to regulatory clearances. The financial advisor to the deal has been Morgan Tenley. AZB and Partners and Davis Poke and Wardwell have been legal advisors to this transaction. On this transaction, Facebook said, "This investment reflects our commitment to India, as well as our enthusiasm for the way Jio has brought about unprecedented changes in the country. In less than four years, Jio has played a big role in bringing over 38.80 crore people online. We are committed to connecting more people together with Jio." This Facebook investment will significantly help Reliance Industries, a well-known company from oil to the telecom sector, to reduce its debt.
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