Facebook has become the largest minority shareholder of Jio after it acquired 10% of the stakes in the company. It has made investments worth $5.7 billion on the tech subsidiary of multinational conglomerate Reliance Industries.
Presently, Jio operates various broadband and mobile services as well as online commerce platforms in the country. And Facebook wants to collaborate with Jio to help extend and promote its services.
The primary usage of Facebook in India comes from Whatsapp. It has more than 400 million users in the country which is far more than any other country in the world. A certain blog by the chief revenue officer of Facebook, David Fisher, and the Indian VP, Ajit Mohan makes the intent of the investment clear. The blog states that the major goal for Facebook behind this investment is to create opportunities for small businesses. It further says that the term “Whatsapp” has now become colloquial in the Indian scenario cutting across languages and dialects.
The focus would be to collaborate with Jio and find alternatives to promote the growth of the digital economy. For example, the amalgamation of JioMart, the small industries initiative under Jio with Whatsapp would enable seamless shopping experiences for users. It will empower small scale businesses, shops, etc to work more efficiently.
Economic Times, in its report last week said that Facebook and Reliance are now planning to create WeChat like services in the country. WeChat is a Chinese multi-purpose social media and mobile payment app developed by Tencent. It has become one of the world’s largest mobile apps with more than 1 billion users.
Whatsapp’s growth in the Indian scenario can be attributed to Jio which has been largely responsible for bringing Indian people online. Long before its competitors, Jio had started offering heavily discounted 4G plans to the masses.
The blog further read that Facebook is excited to penetrate further in the Indian market which has such a vibrant, growing digital economy. Whereas the primary objective would be to create opportunities for the economic growth of the Indian people and provide an advancing vision.
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