MUMBAI: Abu Dhabi sovereign-wealth fund Mubadala has agreed to invest Rs 9,094 crore in Jio Platforms, marking the first Middle Eastern deal in the Mumbai-based digital-cum-telecom services company.
Mubadala’s investment will give the fund a 1.85% stake in Jio Platforms, which has an enterprise value of Rs 5.16 lakh crore.
Mubadala, with a $229-billion portfolio, is the latest addition to Jio’s roster of marquee investors. These include Facebook and other US firms. Another Abu Dhabi sovereign-wealth fund, ADIA, and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment too plan to acquire shares of Jio. TOI reported about Mubadala’s interest in Jio in its May 23 edition.
Parent RIL has so far inked deals to sell an 18.97% stake in Jio, raising Rs 87,655 crore ($11.5 billion) over the last six weeks. The investors are betting that Jio, which is also India’s largest cellular services operator with over 388 million customers, has the potential to transform sectors from agriculture to retail, and from education to entertainment.
RIL plans to use the external money to lower its debt of Rs 3.36 lakh crore ($44 billion). Debt increased at RIL mainly because of its aggressive expansion through Jio. The external money has also set a valuation for Jio, which would help RIL as it plans to take the digital-cum-telecom services company public in the near future.
The Rs 5.16-lakh-crore enterprise value of Jio includes an equity valuation of Rs 4.91 lakh crore. RIL may explore an overseas listing for Jio, possibly Nasdaq, after India proposed direct listing of companies in foreign jurisdictions.
Jio is Mubadala’s largest investment in an Indian company. The second-largest state investor in Abu Dhabi after ADIA, Mubadala recently backed Waymo, Alphabet’s self-driving car venture.