Microsoft Corp. is reportedly in talks to invest $50 Mn-$100 Mn (INR 320 Cr-INR 640 Cr) in home-bred cab aggregator Ola. In exchange, the technology giant will acquire a minority stake in the ride-hailing startup.
Up until now, Ola has been using Amazon Web Services (AWS) for its operations. If the current deal goes through, the ride-sharing company will likely switch to Microsoft’s Azure Cloud Computing Platform.
The move is being spearheaded by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in a bid to take over AWS’ market in India.
Commenting on the development, a source told Livemint, “The talks with Ola are in very early stages. More than the money, it is more about Nadella’s vision of partnering with more and more large technology companies in India and establish Azure as the service of preference. Microsoft is likely to invest in Ola but a term sheet is yet to be issued.”
Microsoft Azure Looks To Overtake AWS
At present, more than 2,000 startups use Microsoft Azure cloud platform. In February 2017, Microsoft signed a deal with ecommerce startup Flipkart, wherein Flipkart adopted Azure as its exclusive public cloud platform. Later in April, the company invested $200 Mn in Flipkart, as part of the famous $1.4 Bn round led by Tencent and eBay.
During his three-day visit to India in February, Nadella pointed out four main areas that Microsoft is currently working on: cloud, AI, Cortana and augmented reality.