Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) on May 17 said growth equity firm General Atlantic Partners will invest Rs 6,598.38 crore in Jio Platforms, the fourth major deal in a little less than four weeks from leading global tech investors that will infuse a total Rs 67,194.75 crore in the digital unit of India’s largest private enterprise.
General Atlantic is buying a 1.34 percent stake in Jio Platforms, the unit that houses Reliance’s telecom venture Jio Infocomm, Mumbai-headquartered Reliance said in a statement. The investment gives Jio Platforms Rs 4.91 lakh crore and an enterprise value of Rs 5.16 lakh crore, the company said.
The deal comes after RIL secured an investment of Rs 43,574 crore from Facebook for a 9.99 percent stake in Jio Platforms on April 22, and just days after it bagged Rs 5,655.75 crore from private equity firm Silver Lake.
Soon after, Vista Equity Partners, a US-based private equity firm that runs the world’s largest exclusively tech-focused fund, said it will pick up a 2.32 percent stake in Jio Platforms for Rs 11,367 crore.
The investment in Jio by General Atlantic, a leading global growth equity firm with a 40-year track record of investing in the technology, consumer, financial services and healthcare sectors, is its largest in Asia. “As an integrated team operating under a global investment platform across 14 locations, General Atlantic invests behind themes that are driven by innovation and entrepreneurship and supported by long-term secular growth,” RIL said in the statement.
Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries, said he was thrilled to welcome General Atlantic, a marquee global investor, as a valued partner. }I have known General Atlantic for several decades and greatly admired it for its belief in India’s huge growth potential. General Atlantic shares our vision of a Digital Society for India and strongly believes in the transformative power of digitization in enriching the lives of 1.3 billion Indians. We are excited to leverage General Atlantic’s proven global expertise and strategic insights across 40 years of technology investing for the benefit of Jio.”
Bill Ford, Chief Executive Officer of General Atlantic, said, “As long-term backers of global technology leaders and visionary entrepreneurs, we could not be more excited about investing in Jio. We share Mukesh’s conviction that digital connectivity has the potential to significantly accelerate the Indian economy and drive growth across the country. General Atlantic has a long track record working alongside founders to scale disruptive businesses, as Jio is doing at the forefront of the digital revolution in India.”
The fourth investment by a marquee investor is also an endorsement of Jio’s tech capabilities and the potential of the business model in this COVID-19 world and beyond. It reemphasises Jio’s continuing attraction among global investors for its deep understanding of the Indian markets, the rapid digitisation opportunity post-COVID and its capabilities to bring cutting-edge technologies and tools such as AI, blockchain, AR/VR, Big Data into play for all Indians.
(Disclaimer: Reliance Industries Ltd. is the sole beneficiary of Independent Media Trust which controls Network18 Media & Investments Ltd)