India’s Reliance Industries is investing $200 million (roughly Rs. 1,510 crore) in Glance, a lock screen content company backed by Alphabet and owned by ad-tech firm InMobi, to bring the service to new Jio smartphones this year, the companies said on Monday.
The integration will allow Reliance’s retail businesses to advertise products directly to Jio users through Glance, a platform that delivers personalised news, entertainment content and live videos to smartphone lock screens.
Glance could be on “hundreds of millions” of Jio phones this year, InMobi Group Founder and Chief Executive Officer Naveen Tewari said in a phone interview.
Ambani has been steadily buying stakes in consumer internet firms and tying those services into Reliance Jio, as he looks to create a technology behemoth that incorporates connectivity, content and commerce.
“The deal is also expected to lead to further strategic collaborations between Glance, Reliance Retail, and Jio across devices, commerce, content and gaming ecosystem,” InMobi said in a statement.
It will use the fresh funds to expand to US and Latin American markets, and is also testing new ways of content-driven commerce through live videos.
The company is backed by Peter Thiel’s Mithril Capital and Alphabet, which invested $100 million (roughly Rs. 750 crore) in December 2020.
© Thomson Reuters 2022