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Mon 8 Jun 2020 08:19 AM

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Abu Dhabi fund to invest $752m Reliance Industries digital arm

The deal comes days after the Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Investment spent $1.2 billion on a 1.85% stake in Jio

Abu Dhabi fund to invest $752m Reliance Industries digital arm

Ambani’s Jio stake sales jump to $13bn since April. 

Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani added Abu Dhabi Investment Authority to the list of backers of his telecommunications and digital services business, bringing total new investment in Jio Platforms to $13 billion since April.

The state-owned authority will invest $752 million for a 1.16% stake in the arm of Reliance Industries Ltd, the Mumbai-based company said Sunday in a statement. The deal comes days after the emirate’s Mubadala Investment Co. spent $1.2 billion on a 1.85% stake in Jio.

Ambani’s $65 billion digital unit has sold more than 20% in stakes to buyers including Facebook Inc. and U.S. private equity firms including KKR & Co., Silver Lake Partners and General Atlantic.

Jio parent Reliance Industries has vowed to pay down net debt to zero before March 2021, while using its roughly 400 million wireless phone subscribers as the cornerstone of an e-commerce and digital services business in the world’s second-biggest country.

Buyer Amount Stake Date
Facebook $5.7 billion 9.99% April 22
Silver Lake* $1.35 billion 2.1% May 4, June 5
Vista $1.5 billion 2.3% May 8
General Atlantic $873 million 1.3% May 17
KKR $1.5 billion 2.3% May 22
Mubadala $1.2 billion 1.85% June 5
Adia $752 million 1.16% June 7
*Silver Lake’s investment is in two parts, including a $602 million segment announced June 5 that includes backing from co-investors.

The Abu Dhabi and additional Silver Lake investments boost Ambani’s momentum in shifting his sprawling conglomerate, India’s largest company, away from dependence on oil refining and petrochemicals toward telecommunications, e-commerce, online entertainment and payments.

Investors have embraced the strategy, pushing up Reliance shares despite stiff economic headwinds in a country that imposed the world’s most sweeping lockdowns to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Reliance shares touched a record high on Friday and have gained more than 80% since late March.

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