BENGALURU: Google’s $50 billion (Rs 11,000 crore) acquisition of video search company video.com was a milestone in the world of search, and has paved the way for the launch of other services and products in India.
The acquisition has given Google a formidable lead in terms of market share and advertising revenue, but has also raised concerns that the Indian search market will soon be dominated by a handful of well-funded and well-connected companies that are competing for users and money.
Google has been struggling to maintain its dominance in the search market in India, as its Indian unit struggles to compete with competitors such as Apple, Facebook and others.
Google’s acquisition of the video search business is a milestone of sorts for the world’s largest search engine, which has become one of the world “Boom” companies in terms for its ability to acquire and develop businesses in the fast-growing online advertising and digital content markets.
The deal is also seen as a sign that Google will continue to dominate the search space in India in the near future.
Google will invest $50 million to build and operate a new office in India to build out its global operations in the country, said Amit Bansal, head of research at BGC Partners.
This will be a key office, with over 60 employees, in a major technology hub in Mumbai.
The company will invest more than $1 billion in the Indian office, and will invest up to $100 million in the company’s Indian operations, he said.
“The acquisition gives us a tremendous opportunity to scale up and expand in India and bring new technologies to the market,” said Amit Gupta, chairman and CEO of Google India.
He said the company is building a global office in Mumbai that will help it accelerate its growth in India by 25 per cent over the next five years.
Google is already building out an online advertising platform in India called AdSense, which allows the company to monetize its ad revenue through online ads.
The technology platform has been tested in a pilot project at Google Play and is expected to be launched in India later this year.
Google has been ramping up its online presence in India for years, with the company opening offices in Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi and Goa in 2014.
Google’s Indian units are currently focused on Google TV, which is part of Google’s Android TV service, and Android Ads, which was acquired by Google in March 2018.
Google in the past has focused on the search business in India with the acquisition of Search, its online video ad service.
The company is also investing $50.4 million in India’s largest online payment processor, Vistab, which offers merchants in India a payment solution that is built on a blockchain and can process payments in real-time.
The Vistabs, which have over 3,000 merchants in a number of countries, is in the process of opening up for businesses in India through a pilot program.
“Vistabs has a strong presence in the retail and ecommerce sectors, which means we are focused on building out a more robust ecosystem for the global market,” Bansal said.
Vistabi, which operates in more than 150 countries, has also acquired another Indian payments processor, MoneyPak.