Yesterday, Facebook made its largest single investment into Jio Platforms of India which was a huge bet on the developing company.
Because Facebook wants to appeal more to the Indian audience, they felt the investment was essential, especially since over the past four years, more than 388 million people in India have been connected to the internet.
Mark Zuckerberg spoke on this in a Facebook post saying,
The country 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…With communities around the world in lockdown, many of these entrepreneurs need digital tools they can rely on to find and communicate with customers and grow their businesses.
Jio Platforms itself is a subsidiary of Reliance Industries (which is one of India’s biggest multinational companies and a major provider of cellular and internet services in the country,) therefore, the investment proves to be something that will propel the company forward and will ultimately help the Indian people to stay connected through the internet.
Although the Coronavirus pandemic has created a very fragile time for large tech companies when it comes to moving forward with investments, Facebook felt that taking a risk with Jio Platforms was necessary during this time and wants to display perseverance during this difficult period.
With this deal, Facebook will incur a 9.9 percent stake in Jio Platforms, and the respective money from Facebook will help Reliance to reduce some of their debt and invest further into its network (which it needs to do after regulators delayed approval of a high-profile $15 billion deal to sell 25 percent of its energy business to the Saudis.)