Mukesh Ambani, Asia’s richest man as Indian Billionaire, laid out a vision for his digital venture as he seeks to build a homegrown technology titan that could rival global giants after securing more than $20 billion in investment from the likes of Google and Facebook Inc.
Ambani, outlining plans for Jio Platforms Ltd. at the annual shareholders meeting of his conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd. on July 15, talked mostly on technology.
He unveiled a slew of services, including a fifth-generation wireless network as early as next year and a mega video-streaming platform that will bring Netflix, Disney+ Hotstar, Amazon Prime and dozens of other TV channels under one umbrella.
“I believe that the time has come for a truly global digital product and services company to emerge from India, and to be counted among the best in the world,” the tycoon told the 300,000-plus people who logged into the virtual conference from 41 countries.
63 year old Ambani inherited an oil refining and petrochemicals empire after his father’s death in 2002 and now is betting on technology for future growth in a pivot away from the legacy business.
Jio Platforms, unveiled last year is now at the center of his ambitions to tap a market of more than 1 billion people, who are increasingly embracing mobile devices and data plans to shop online. Jio is eyeing an opportunity to shake up retail, content streaming, digital payments, education and health care.
Some plans laid out by Mukesh Ambani:
Jio, which started out as a wireless carrier as its first building block back in 2016, will roll out its 5G network once airwaves are available, according to Ambani. Unlike other carriers, Jio will be using a technology developed locally for 5G, Ambani said, leaving it immune to political disputes linked to Chinese equipment vendors that global telecommunications companies are embroiled in.
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