Google in a press release on Monday said that it plans to invest $10 billion in India in the next five to seven years as the search giant looks to help accelerate adoption of digital services in the key overseas market.
Sundar Pichai, chief executive of Google, today unveiled Google for India Digitization Fund through which the company will be making the investments in the country.
“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,” he said via video conference at the company’s annual event focused on India.
Investments will focus on four areas:
- First, enabling affordable access and information for every Indian in their own language, whether it’s Hindi, Tamil, Punjabi or any other
- Second, building new products and services that are deeply relevant to India’s unique needs
- Third, empowering businesses as they continue or embark on their digital transformation
- Fourth, leveraging technology and AI for social good, in areas like health, education, and agriculture
India is a key overseas market for Google, where a range of its products and services including Search, YouTube, and Android have made inroads with much of the entire online population. The nation of 1.3 billion people has emerged as perhaps the last great untapped growth market for American and Chinese giants.
More than 500 million people in India are online today and over 450 million smartphones are in active usage in the country.
“There’s still more work to do in order to make the internet affordable and useful for a billion Indians…from improving voice input and computing for all of India’s languages, to inspiring and supporting a whole new generation of entrepreneurs,” said India-born Pichai.