Intel Capital latest to back India's digital future


Intel Capital, the investment arm of Intel Corp (NASDAQ: INTC) has joined the growing list of global firms investing in a stake in India’s digital future.

The American multinational on Friday confirmed it was to invest US$250 million in Jio Platforms, owned by Reliance Industries, for a 0.39% equity stake.

The deal makes Intel Capital the 11th backer since Facebook took a 9.99% stake in late April and the start of a second phase of investment activity.

Wendell Brooks, president of Intel Capital, said: “Jio Platforms’ focus on applying its impressive engineering capabilities to bring the power of low-cost digital services to India aligns with Intel’s purpose of delivering breakthrough technology that enriches lives. We believe digital access and data can transform business and society for the better. Through this investment, we are excited to help fuel digital transformation in India, where Intel maintains an important presence.”

Intel has operated in India for more than two decades and operates state-of-the-art design facilities in Bengaluru and Hyderabad.

Prior to this latest deal, Jio Platforms had raised more than $23 billion in 58 days from investments and a stake sale to BP. The company said the deals, which also included India’s largest ever rights issue, were “unprecedented in Indian corporate history and have set new benchmarks”.

When Jio’s 10th backer – Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund – was announced last month, the firm said it marked “the end of Jio Platforms’ current phase of induction of financial partners”, following which it would begin preparations for an IPO by 2024.

Mukesh Ambani, chair and MD of Reliance Industries, said: “We are extremely delighted to deepen our ties with technology leaders that embody our vision of transforming India into a leading digital society in the world.

“Intel is a true industry leader, working towards creating world-changing technology and innovations. Intel Capital has an outstanding record of being a valuable partner for leading technology companies globally. We are therefore excited to work together with Intel to advance India’s capabilities in cutting-edge technologies that will empower all sectors of our economy and improve the quality of life of 1.3 billion Indians.”

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