India’s Reliance Industries said on Sunday Qualcomm Inc’s investment arm will buy a 0.15% stake in its digital unit Jio Platforms for 7.3 billion rupees ($97.1 million).
The partnership will help Jio Platforms, the unit that houses Reliance’s telecoms venture Jio Infocomm, to “roll out advanced 5G infrastructure and services for Indian customers”, Reliance said in a statement.
Qualcomm’s move comes at a time India is preparing to auction 5G airwaves to telecoms service providers.
With this new investment, Reliance has sold a 25.2% stake in Jio Platforms to investors in a funding spree that began late April, raising $15.69 billion.
Although Jio Platforms also comprises Reliance’s music and movie apps, Jio Infocomm – the mobile carrier – is its centrepiece.
Reliance chairman and billionaire tycoon Mukesh Ambani has always pitched Jio Infocomm as a tech company instead of a traditional telecoms firm.
That has helped Ambani win the backing of major tech firms such as Facebook Inc, Intel and now Qualcomm.
“Qualcomm offers deep technology know-how and insights that will help us deliver on our 5G vision and the digital transformation of India for both people and enterprises,” Ambani said in the statement.