Indian competition watchdog clears Facebook’s acquisition of 9.99% stake in Jio Platforms

FILE PHOTO: Commuters use their mobile phones as they wait at a bus stop with an advertisement of Reliance Industries' Jio telecoms unit, in Mumbai, India July 10, 2017. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade/File Photo

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has approved Facebook’s acquisition of a 9.99 per cent stake in Reliance Industries Ltd’s telecom unit Jio Platforms for Rs 43,574 crore, per its tweet on Wednesday.

The US-based social media giant had announced its investment in Jio Platforms through Jaadhu Holdings LLC in April this year. The deal is expected to give Facebook a stronger foothold in India’s burgeoning digital market while also helping the Indian oil-to-telecom conglomerate significantly pare its debt.

In less than two months, Jio has raised Rs 1,15,693.95 crores ($15.2 billion) by selling about 24.7 per cent stake to global investors, including Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Silver Lake Partners, Vista Equity Partners, KKR, General Atlantic, Mubadala, TPG, and L Catterton.

Last week, Reliance Industries said it had become free of net debt ahead of a March 2021 target. “Our net-debt was Rs 161,035 crore, as on March 31 2020. With these investments, RIL has become net debt-free,” Reliance Industries said in a statement on Friday.

Jio Platforms, which is controlled by Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani, houses RIL’s telecom business under Reliance Jio Infocomm with over 388 million subscribers, besides other digital properties and investments. The company is likely to surpass 500 million users by 2023.

In January, Jio overtook other telecom companies to become the number one operator in India in terms of both subscriber base as well as revenue market share.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.