Within two-weeks of social media giant Facebook stake buying in Reliance Jio, America’s private equity giant Silver Lake Partners has clinched 1% of Jio Platforms for Rs 5,655.75 crore ($750 million) in a deal that takes Jio’s enterprise value to Rs 5.15 lakh crore. The current deal is at 12.5% premium to the value indicated by Facebook, which bought 9.99% of the digital unit of RIL.
Facebook spent $5.7 billion to buy a 9.99% stake in Jio. The Facebook-Jio deal was the social media network’s biggest since its $22 billion buyout of WhatsApp in 2014.
Silver Lake shot into prominence after acquiring PC maker Dell Inc along with Michael Dell in 2013. It is a global leader in technology investing, with over $43 billion in combined assets under management and committed capital and a team of approximately 100 investment and operating professionals located around the world in Silicon Valley, New York, Hong Kong and London.
Since its launch three years ago, Jio – led by billionaire Mukesh Ambani – has grown at a brisk pace to become India’s largest telecom company. It has accumulated some 340 million customers through a barrage of innovations, including offering cut-throat mobile internet prices and a diverse suite of products and including chat services, movies, games and music.
The deal will help reduce RIL’s debt burden, which bulged due to the breakneck expansion of Jio and other businesses. Ambani invested around $40 billion to launch Jio in 2016.
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