Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday said its partnership with Jio Platforms will help support millions of small businesses in India. Zuckerberg made the remark during a conversation with Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director, Reliance Industries at the first Facebook Fuel for India 2020 event. "At Facebook, we are in the business of serving small businesses. And nowhere is this more true than in India," the Facebook CEO said.
"With more than 60 million small businesses and millions of people around the country relying on them for jobs -- these small businesses form a big part of what our partnership with Jio can serve here," he said.
In April this year, Facebook announced investment of Rs 43,574 crore in Jio Platforms for a 9.99% stake. Zuckerberg said that supporting small businesses has become more important in view of the Covid-19 induced impact on the economy.
"One of the big opportunities I see with the partnership with Jio Platforms, is the role that we can play together in supporting the millions of small businesses in India - especially now with the impact that Covid is having," he said.
"It is accelerating the move for a lot of businesses from physical storefronts to digital." Ambani said that technology will democratise wealth and value creation for individuals and small businesses in India.
"Through our partnership (Jio Platforms and Facebook), we will become a value creation platform for our customers and small businesses, giving them a chance to digitise and be at par with anybody else in the world," said the Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries.’
The social network said it is partnering and investing in India's digital ecosystem as an opportunity to create long-term impact in areas that are relevant for the country.
"In collaboration with Jio Platforms, we want to further accelerate India's digital transformation and work to open up new opportunities for people and businesses around the country," it added.
Mukesh Ambani, Chairman, Reliance Industries Limited said that the partnership between Jio and Facebook is great for India, Indians and small Indian businesses.
"I have no hesitation in going on record, that it is your investment that set the ball rolling. Not only for Jio, but for the Indian FDI which has been the largest-ever in its history. And our partnership between Jio and Facebook, will actually demonstrate that it is great for India, Indians, and small Indian businesses," Ambani said.
Facebook said the largest communities for Facebook and WhatsApp are in India and Instagram is getting there. "This makes India a key market to test and roll our new features from here. From the launch of Reels on Instagram, to Watch on Facebook and Payments on WhatsApp, India is playing a crucial role in the way products are being designed for the future," the company stressed. There are 15 million WhatsApp Business app users in India.
Facebook on Tuesday also said that it is committed to help India quickly recover economically and socially in 2021 from the pandemic-hit year, by deepening support for small businesses and test and roll its new features from the country to the rest of the world. It was launched during its ‘Fuel for India’ event.