America’s PE Giant Silver Lake Buys 1% of Jio Platforms

American private equity giant Silver Lake Partners has bought 1 percent 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 — a 12.5 premium to the value indicated by Facebook, which bought 9.99 percent of the digital unit of RIL.

The deal comes less than two weeks after Facebook spent $5.7 billion to buy a 9.99 percent 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.

On April 30, Reliance said, “In addition to the Facebook 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.”

On April 22, Facebook bought 9.9 percent stake in Jio Platforms for Rs 43,574 crore. That deal valued Jio at Rs 4.62 lakh crore ($65.95 billion).

Since its launch three years ago, Jio – led by billionaire Mukesh Ambani – has grown at a sprinter’s 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. RIL is also the largest retail player in India thanks to a series of aggressive expansionary moves into consumer-facing businesses such as e-commerce and grocery.Source: moneycontrol.com

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