Daily Crunch: Facebook makes a big bet in India

Facebook makes a $5.7 billion investment in Reliance Jio, Netflix’s latest quarter was even better than expected and Patreon lays off 30 employees.

Here’s your Daily Crunch for April 22, 2020. (And happy Earth Day!)

1. Facebook invests $5.7B in India’s Reliance Jio

As China’s fast-growing ByteDance (owner of TikTok) emerges as a formidable competitor in what has become the world’s second largest internet market, Facebook has found the horse it wants to bet on in the new decade.

The social media giant announced today it has invested $5.7 billion for a 9.99% stake in India’s Reliance Jio Platforms — a three-and-a-half-year-old subsidiary of Reliance Industries, the biggest telecom operator in the country. Facebook said it will focus on collaborating with Jio to create “new ways for people and businesses to operate more effectively in the growing digital economy.”

2. Netflix beats growth predictions with 15.77M net new subscribers

Before the COVID-19 crisis, Netflix had forecast 7 million net new paid subscribers for its Q1 earnings. With the dramatically changed landscape, growth was obviously going to beat the forecast, but the quarter came in at more than double expectations, with 15.77 million paid net additions. That brings Netflix’s total paid subscriber count to 182.86 million.

3. Patreon lays off 13% of workforce

Patreon, which enables creators to build relationships with their fans via monthly subscriptions for content in exchange for perks and other benefits, had seen an uptick in new creators launching on the platform in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, the company said it saw patrons exiting the platform more than usual due to financial hardships.

4. Snap surges on earnings revenue beat and Q1 user gains

Daily active users reached 229 million in the first-quarter, representing a 20% year-over-year gain, higher than the 224.5 million users that had been expected. Another interesting tidbit from the earnings release was the 35% year-over-year growth in daily time spent watching content in Discover.

5. Dear Sophie: How can we support our immigrant colleagues during layoffs?

An entrepreneur writes in to lawyer Sophie Alcorn asking how to support an immigrant co-founder and employee as they wind down their startup. (Extra Crunch membership required.)

6. Senate passes new $484 billion relief bill to replenish small business loans, fund hospitals and testing

The focal point of the new legislation is the $310 billion it will allocate to the Paycheck Protection Program. That program was beset by problems from the outset, with a huge portion of small business owners failing to secure the forgivable loans through banks even with prompt applications in the program’s earliest moments.

7. Epic Games launches Fortnite on the Google Play Store, and they’re not happy about it

When Fortnite launched on mobile in 2018, Epic Games very notably sidestepped the Google Play Store and pushed users to download the title directly from their website, an effort made to avoid the substantial revenue cuts that Google takes from in-app purchases of Play Store downloads.

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