Silver Lake follows Facebook with Jio Platforms investment

Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries has secured the second major funding injection in the space of a month for its digital arm, with US private equity firm Silver Lake investing INR56.56bn (€683.5m/$747.7m) in Jio Platforms.

Announced today (Monday), the deal with Silver Lake values Jio Platforms, which includes telco division Jio Infocomm, at around $65bn. Social media giant Facebook last month invested $5.7bn in Jio Platforms, a move that made it the largest minority shareholder.

Reliance said Silver Lake’s investment represented a 12.5-per-cent premium to the equity valuation of the Facebook deal, giving it a stake of a little more than one per cent in Jio Platforms.

Jio has more than 370 million subscribers and its JioTV video streaming service carries sports content, including domestic streaming rights to cricket matches organised by the Board of Control for Cricket in India through an agreement with Star India.

Silver Lake has a significant presence in the global sports market, most notably through its investment in Endeavor, the US-based sports and entertainment group whose assets include the IMG agency and the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

In November, City Football Group, the owner of English Premier League club Manchester City, sold a stake in its business to Silver Lake for $500m. The deal covered a shareholding of just over 10 per cent and gave Abu Dhabi-based CFG a valuation of $4.8bn.

Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries, said today: “Silver Lake has an outstanding record of being a valuable partner for leading technology companies globally. Silver Lake is one of the most respected voices in technology and finance. We are excited to leverage insights from their global technology relationships for the Indian Digital Society’s transformation.”