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New Delhi: General Atlantic, an US investment firm, will be investing 6,600 crore in Jio Platforms for 1.34% stake in the telecom unit of Reliance Industries, the company said in a statement.

General Atlantic had in the past helped fund Airbnb Inc. and Uber Technologies Inc.,

"This investment values Jio Platforms at an equity value of 4.91 lakh crore and an enterprise value of 5.16 lakh crore," said Jio Platforms. This investment continues to reaffirm Jio as a next generation software product and platform company, the company said in a statement.

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, said: “I am thrilled to welcome General Atlantic, a marquee global investor, as a valued partner. I have known General Atlantic for several decades and greatly admired it for its belief in India’s huge growth potential. General Atlantic shares our vision of a Digital Society for India and strongly believes in the transformative power of digitization in enriching the lives of 1.3 billion Indians. We are excited to leverage General Atlantic’s proven global expertise and strategic insights across 40 years of technology investing for the benefit of Jio."

Bill Ford, Chief Executive Officer of General Atlantic, said: “As long-term backers of global technology leaders and visionary entrepreneurs, we could not be more excited about investing in Jio. We share Mukesh’s conviction that digital connectivity has the potential to significantly accelerate the Indian economy and drive growth across the country. General Atlantic has a long track record working alongside founders to scale disruptive businesses, as Jio is doing at the forefront of the digital revolution in India."

Morgan Stanley acted as financial advisor to Reliance Industries and AZB & Partners, and Davis Polk & Wardwell acted as legal counsel. Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison and Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co. acted as legal counsel to General Atlantic.

The new investment into Jio Platforms will add to the $8 billion deal run that RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani has sealed in recent weeks. Facebook Inc. in April agreed to pay $5.7 billion for a 10% stake in the digital unit, while Silver Lake Partners and Vista Equity Partners last week said they would invest about $2.25 billion in total.

Akash Ambani, Director of Reliance Jio, said "We are delighted that a renowned global investor like General Atlantic is partnering with us in our journey to digitally empower India and Indians. Jio is committed to make a digitally inclusive India that will provide immense opportunities to every Indian citizen especially to our highly talented youth. General Atlantic's endorsement and partnership energises Jio’s young team to set, and achieve, even more ambitious goals in our onward march."

Investors are betting on Jio’s access to India’s huge consumer market, and its potential to shake up traditional industries in the country -- from retail to education and payments -- with its technology. India is the only major open Internet market where foreign technology giants such as Amazon.com.Inc., Walmart Inc. and Google’s parent Alphabet Inc. can compete for market share.

The string of investments from technology giants and private equity firms will go toward slashing debt at Reliance Industries, which is controlled by Mukesh Ambani. The outside money also helps set a valuation for Jio, which until recently has been largely owned by the billionaire’s conglomerate.

The deals, along with its plan to sell $7 billion in new shares, will help Reliance meet its target of eliminating $21.4 billion of net debt by the end of the year.

Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) is also considering to buy a minority stake in Jio, Bloomberg said in a news report a few days ago.

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