In just a period of two years, India’s business mogul Mukesh Ambani has taken stakes in more than 20 startups and around half-a-dozen small firms, making RIL watchers speculate what he is up to in actual fact.
Mukesh and his merger & acquisition squad have been tremendously busy during last few months, cherry-picking nearly two dozen startups with evident prospective. During the past week, the firm got hold of conversational AI platform Haptik.
Half of these contracts have been inked in the telecommunication sector and media zones that hints Team Ambani has much more up its sleeve even after turning things upside down in a telecom industry that had already struck deep roots.
Some of the acquirements, comprising music streaming application programs, a media production home, a cable set-up and AI companies, clearly hint the conglomerate’s goal of dominating the country’s digital content sphere.
Suring the past week, Reliance Jio Digital Services signed up a Rs 700 crore contract to get hold of Haptik, one of the globe’s major conversational AI platforms, which counts Samsung, Coca-Cola, Future Retail, KFC, Tata Group, Oyo Rooms and Mahindra Group amongst marquee customers.
Akash Ambani, Director, Reliance Jio, stated, “This strategic investment underlines our commitment to further boosting the digital ecosystem and providing Indian users conversational AI-enabled devices with multi-lingual capabilities.”
Last March, Reliance Jio made declaration about incorporation of its digital music service, JioMusic, and OTT podium Saavn which controls Amazon Alexa in the country. The joint unit, valued at more than $1 billion, then rolled out JioSaavn to contend with Amazon Music, Apple Music and Gaana.
During June that year, RIL got hold of open telecom solution source Radisys for around $74 million in an agreement centered mainly on augmenting Jio’s attendance in 5G, IoT, and open source architecture implementation.
The country is yet to take on 5G, with the spectrum allotment likely to begin only sometime during late this year. Ambani’s Reliance Jio is proposing to roll out 5G by mid next year.
Sanjiv Bhasin, Executive VP, Markets & Corporate Affairs, IIFL Securities said, “It (RIL) is on the path to becoming India’s Netflix or Amazon.”