Days after selling a stake in its digital arm to Facebook for $5.7 billion, Reliance Industries on Thursday said it was in talks with other strategic and financial investors for a similar-sized deal that will help cut debt at the unit.
Without revealing the identity of the companies, RIL in its fourth-quarter earnings statement said the investment would be announced in the coming months. “In addition to the FB investment, the board was informed that RIL has received strong interest from other strategic and financial investors and is in good shape to announce a similar-sized investment in the coming months,” it said.
Ahead of last week's announcement of Facebook buying a 9.99 per cent stake in Jio Platforms, there were unconfirmed reports of the company being in parallel discussions with Google. The potential interest, the company said, establishes “the attractiveness of Jio Platforms to the world and is a strong validation of RIL's capability to conceive large-scale disruptive greenfield businesses”.
“With strong visibility to these equity infusions, the board was informed that RIL is set to achieve net-zero debt status ahead of its own aggressive timeline,” the statement said.
Mukesh Ambani is looking to replicate the success of WeChat and Alipay in China as multipurpose superapps — platforms with integrated chat functions, payment and financial services and online shopping — to take on Amazon and Flipkart in an e-commerce market that KPMG says is likely to grow to $200 billion by 2027.