Screenshot 2020 04 22 at 12.11.09

Facebook Targets Small Business In India

Social media giant Facebook is continuing it’s global push to dominate the world of commerce with a stake in an Indian telco as part of a drive to develop an ecosystem for small business in the country.

The news is hot on the heels of the revelation that the company plans to begin recruiting in Dublin for it’s new cryptocurrency that is expected later this year.

Libra is a blockchain digital currency proposed by the American social media company and The Irish Times reported that up to 50 jobs are in the offing in Ireland’s capital on the project as it ramps up towards a launch phase.

Facebook will spend $5.7 billion for 9.9 per cent of Reliance Industries Limited’s telecom business Reliance Jio, as the social media giant looks to leverage its popular WhatsApp messenger to offer digital payment services to small grocers in India.

‘Small businesses are the core of every country’s economy’

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO

Facebook owned Whatsapp already has a huge footprint in India and has moved to evolve the app into a trading platform, but there has been a pushback in the use of Whatsapp in the corporate world because of the volume of disinformation it carries, and in Ireland the GAA even advised against it’s use on GDPR grounds.

Screenshot 2020 04 22 at 12.31.05
WhatsApp has a business offering but suffers from privacy concerns.

The Indian telco that Facebook is investing in already has an ecommerce platform JioMart and the Facebook boss clearly believes there is good opportunity there if they can win over the local market.

In welcoming the Facebook founder into his company, Shri Mukesh D Ambani, Chairman, Reliance Industries Limited said the partnership envisions the digital transformation of India, a country many believe will lead the globe once the planet is on the other side of the pandemic.

Seperately, Facebook has announced a 100 million dollar grant programme for small businesses coping with the covid 19 fallout.

Business owners in thirty countries can qualify if they meet the criteria which are:

  • Have between 2 and 50 employees
  • Have been in business for over a year
  • Have experienced challenges from COVID-19
  • Be in or near a location where Facebook operate

However when we checked there was no sign of Ireland being allowed to apply as yet.?

Facebook first arrived in Ireland in 2009, attracted by the low corporation tax and now employs 5000 in the country where it set up it’s European headquarters.