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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Facebook is spending $5.7 billion to become the largest minority shareholder of Indian telecom operator Reliance Jio, the company announced on Tuesday.

Why it matters, via Axios' Ina Fried: Facebook has long sought a way to get more people in India using its services. In the past it has looked to subsidize mobile traffic to its services, a move that drew the ire of net neutrality advocates and other critics.

Details: Facebook is investing in Jio Platforms, the telecom and tech subsidiary of Mumbai-based conglomerate Reliance Industries. The companies plan to pair WhatsApp and JioMart, Jio’s small business initiative, for mobile shopping, Facebook's Chief Revenue Officer David Fischer and Jio's VP Ajit Mohan said in a joint press release.

What they're saying: "India is in the midst of one of the most dynamic social and economic transformations the world has ever seen, driven by the rapid adoption of digital technologies. In just the past five years, more than 560 million people in India have gained access to the internet," Fischer and Mohan said.

Go deeper: Facebook spending $100 million to help news outlets in coronavirus crisis

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect that Facebook is investing in Jio Platforms (not Jio Systems).

Go deeper

Jul 30, 2020 - Economy & Business

Facebook beats Wall Street estimates despite pandemic and boycott

Photo: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images

Facebook's stock was up more than 6% in after-hours trading on Thursday, after the tech giant reported strong revenue growth, despite a global ad slowdown due to the pandemic and a growing advertiser boycott.

Why it matters: Facebook's ability to beat top and bottom line revenue expectations amid the coronavirus crisis and the boycott speaks to the strength of the company's appeal to marketers despite serious challenges.

Updated Jul 29, 2020 - Technology

Tech's major powers face heat during House antitrust hearing

Screenshot: CSPAN

Wednesday's House antitrust hearing with the CEOs of Facebook, Google, Amazon and Apple went down some politically fraught rabbit holes, but also saw tech's most powerful figures face sharper questions than they've seen before from Washington.

What's happening: Republicans slammed the companies for alleged anti-conservative bias, but Democrats largely narrowed their focus to possible competitive abuses, putting the CEOs on their back feet and producing some surprising admissions.

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Over 3,000 detained in protests across Russia demanding Navalny's release

Russian police officers beat protestesters at a rally against of jailing of oppositon leader Alexei Navalny in Moscow on Saturday. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Police in Russia on Saturday arrested more than 3,300 people as protesters nationwide demanded that opposition leader Alexey Navalny be released from jail.

Details: Demonstrations began in the eastern regions of Russia and spread west to more than 60 cities.