Google Announces $10bn Investment Fund to Digitize India
By Alex Alley, Data Centre Dynamics
July 14, 2020
Google and Alphabet’s CEO Sundar Pichai announced the ‘Google for India Digitization Fund,’ worth $10bn.
The funds will be invested over the next five to seven years.
Pichai announced the fund in a video message as part of its #Google for India 2020 digital event. In the video, he is joined by Sanjay Gupta, the country manager and VP of Google India, and several Indian politicians.
“Today, I’m excited to announce the Google for India Digitization Fund,” Pichai said.
“Through this effort, we will invest ?75,000 crore, or approximately $10bn, into India over the next five-seven years. We’ll do this through a mix of equity investments, partnerships, and operational, infrastructure, and ecosystem investments. This is a reflection of our confidence in the future of India and its digital economy.
“As we make these investments, we look forward to working alongside Prime Minister Modi and the Indian government, as well as Indian businesses of all sizes to realize our shared vision for a Digital India.”
Digital India is a campaign launched by the Indian Government, initially to ensure public services were accessible to its citizens online.
The campaign has called to improve the country’s online infrastructure and increase Internet connectivity, with people in remote areas given cheaper data plans or interconnectivity solutions in rural areas. The program was launched by the Indian PM Narendra Modi in 2015.
Despite the many millions who lack basic online access, India is still home to one of the largest populations of Internet users. But, due to the proposed Personal Data Protection Bill, Indian user data may well have to be located in-country.
This has spurred a number of large US tech firms to locate data centers in the country where 1.3 billion people live and work.