Google to Invest Up to $1 Billion in Airtel to Promote 5G Usage in India

Partnership: Google to invest up to $1 billion in Airtel, both companies will work together to promote 5G usage in India.

This investment includes an equity investment of $700 million in Google Swar Bharti Airtel at a price of INR 734 per share. Of this, up to $300 million will be used to implement commercial agreements.

To accelerate the growth of India’s digital ecosystem and keeping the future in mind, Airtel and Google have entered into a long term agreement. As part of this partnership, Google intends to invest up to $1 billion from its Google for India Digitalization Fund in Airtel. These investments include equity investments as well as funds for potential commercial agreements. This fund will be used in mutually agreed upon identification of areas required for digitization of the country over the next five years.

This investment includes an equity investment of $700 million in Google Swar Bharti Airtel at a price of INR 734 per share. Of this, up to $300 million will be used to implement commercial agreements. This will include investments in expanding Airtel’s products and services. Also, it includes innovation programs aimed at expanding access and accelerating digital usage in India’s digital ecosystem. In addition, various services and tools will also be developed.

Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Bharti Airtel said, “Airtel and Google share a common vision to grow India‘s digital dividend through innovative products. With our future-ready network, digital platform, delivery and digital payment system, we look forward to working closely with Google to comprehensively grow India’s digital ecosystem.”
Both Airtel and Google have agreed to jointly invest and collaborate in a wide range of areas to create digital solutions that will uniquely meet the needs of India. As part of this commercial agreement, Airtel and Google will work together to bring the best of Google-Airtel services and offers, including providing consumers with a range of Android-enabled tools through innovative affordability programs. At the same time, both the companies will continue to identify more opportunities available to reduce the barriers for consumers to single smartphone across the price points series, in partnership with various device makers. Both companies will also focus on shaping and developing the cloud ecosystem in India to accelerate this digital transformation journey. Airtel serves over one million small and medium businesses with its enterprise connectivity offering, and this partnership will help them accelerate their adoption of digitalisation.

As part of the partnership’s larger strategic goals, the two companies will potentially address India-specific network domain use cases for 5G and other standards, with state-of-the-art implementations. Airtel is already using Google’s 5G-ready Evolved Packet Core and Software Defined Network platform, and plans to increase the availability of Google’s network virtualization solutions to provide a better network experience to its customers.

Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said, “Airtel is a leader in shaping India’s digital future, and we are proud to partner on a shared vision to expand connectivity and ensure equal access to the Internet for more Indians. ” He further added, “Our commercial and equity investment in Airtel is an extension of our Google Digitization Fund’s efforts to increase access to smartphones, enhance connectivity to support new business models and help companies in their digital transformation. ”

 

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