Boyden Executive Search

India’s telecoms sector has been on a rapid growth trajectory for over a decade. Within this dynamic space, Mumbai-based conglomerate Reliance Industries is readying for the commercial launch of its nationwide fourth-generation broadband platform, Reliance Jio. The company has invested more than $20 billion in what will be India’s biggest 4G network. It could reshape the country’s telecoms market, as Reliance has set out to do.
By Boyden
India’s telecoms sector has been on a rapid growth trajectory for over a decade. Within this dynamic space, Mumbai-based conglomerate Reliance Industries is readying for the commercial launch of its nationwide fourth-generation broadband platform, Reliance Jio. The company has invested more than $20 billion in what will be India’s biggest 4G network. It could reshape the country’s telecoms market, as Reliance has set out to do.

The beta version of Jio currently has a 1.5 million user base, comprised of Reliance employees and partners. “The test program will be progressively upgraded into commercial operations in coming months”, the company said in a statement. The Reliance Jio platform will include high-speed 4G internet service, digital commerce, media and payment services.

India is currently the world’s second-largest telecommunications market, and with Reliance planning to offer low-cost services, it could become fiercely competitive. Reliance Jio aims to have 100 million subscribers in the first 12 months of its network launch – which is more 3G/4G subscribers than India’s top three providers, Airtel, Vodafone and Idea.

Run by India’s richest man, Mukesh Ambani, Reliance has businesses in energy, petrochemicals, textiles, natural resources and retail in addition to being a force in the telecommunications industry. It runs the world’s largest single-location refinery and currently gets 95% of its profit from oil and petrochemicals. However, under Ambani’s leadership, Reliance has been making a big push to expand in telecoms, as well as e-commerce and retail, since buying its first airwaves in 2010. It is also setting up a payments system in a partnership with State Bank of India.
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