Facebook in talks to acquire stake in Reliance Jio: Report

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Social media giant Facebook, which has also marked a strong presence in the sports broadcast world, is reportedly eyeing a major investment in India’s leading telecom network operator Reliance Jio, owned by India’s highest valued industrial entity Reliance industries.

According to business daily Financial Express, Reliance Jio is in talks with the Mark Zuckerberg-owned social media platform for a 10% disinvestment. The deal will run into multi-billion dollars, the daily has reported.

Reliance Industries late last year had restructured its group to make Jio entity net debt free. The telecom major, within three and a half years of its launch, has emerged the leading private telecom network operator company. To gain the major market share, Reliance Jio had offered 4G data and voice calls and sparked a price war among the mobile network service rivals.

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The company is reportedly valued at over $60 billion. This would mean Reliance Industries stand to gain from the deal up to $ 6 billion, which will amount to about 25% of the reported $25 billion investment over the years.

Facebook is increasing its footprint in India. The company had last year funded social commerce platform Meesho and also expressed interest in another startup Unacacdemy.

Facebook and Reliance Jio had also partnered last year for a digital literacy drive Digital Udaan. It was targeted at tens of millions of JioPhone users in India, who were new to the internet. The joint initiative, according to yourstorey.com, had reached 200 locations across 13 Indian States and introduced vernacular users to the joys of mobile connectivity.

Jio in January this year had become India’s largest telecom network, counting 370 million subscribers. It had also posted a record 62.5% growth in profits.

Facebook among other content exclusively streams all LaLiga action LIVE in India. The company’s sports vertical globally is headed by sports broadcast industry veteran Peter Hutton.

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