Saturday, July 11, 2020
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Asia's richest man gets $1.5 billion from Saudi Arabia for his tech war chest

In less than two months, Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani has amassed more than $15 billion in investments to fuel his technology ambitions from the likes of Facebook and top Silicon Valley investors Silver Lake and TPG.

Now he has attracted a powerful new investor with deep pockets: Saudi Arabia.
The kingdom's sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), will pay $1.5 billion for a 2.3% stake in Jio Platforms, the digital technology arm of Ambani's sprawling conglomerate Reliance Industries. The deal, announced on Thursday, values Jio Platforms at close to $68 billion.
It's the tenth major investment in Jio Platforms since April, when Facebook bet $5.7 billion in one of its biggest ever deals. That deal offered Facebook a crucial foothold in India's fast-growing internet market and further cemented Ambani's position as a kingmaker in the region. The social media company has hundreds of millions of users in India and has already invested heavily into growing its own business, but has run into a series of regulatory hurdles in recent years.
Thanks to the fundraising blitz and a recent $7 billion share sale, Reliance Industries said on Friday that it is now debt free. The company said its net debt at the end of March was 1.61 trillion rupees ($21 billion).

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