India Ambani hands over Reliance telecom unit to his son in first stage of management change | Techno Glob

June 29 (Reuters) – Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani has quit the telecoms arm of Reliance Industries (RELI.NS), passing the reins to his son Akash and setting the stage for a leadership transition at his retail energy conglomerate .

Mukesh’s son Akash, 30, has been appointed chairman of the board of directors of Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd, the company announced in a regulatory filing on Tuesday. Akash was already a non-executive director of the telecom branch.

Mukesh Ambani, who ranked tenth on the Forbes global billionaires list, signaled last year that his children would play an important role in the family business, which has grown sixfold over the past decade to become a $218 billion empire.

Reliance is “making a momentous leadership transition,” he said at an event in December.

Analysts say the 65-year-old has positioned experienced executives and longtime friends and family to guide his children through the transition, and they’ve played bigger roles at annual general meetings and have led some company announcements.

Shares of Reliance Industries rose 2.7% on Wednesday.

Akash Ambani, who attended Brown University, was part of a team that brokered a $5.7 billion 2020 investment by Meta Platforms (META.O) in Jio Platforms, a unit of Reliance.

Akash’s twin sister, Isha, serves as a director on the boards of Jio as well as Reliance Retail, home to the conglomerate’s ambitious bets in India’s physical space. The media has named her as the next president of retail.

The youngest of the siblings, Anant, is director of Reliance’s renewable energy, petroleum and chemical units.


Tuesday’s move is Mukesh Ambani’s biggest setback to the company to date. Still, he will continue as chairman of Jio Platforms, a unit of Reliance that owns Jio Infocomm and other digital assets.

This comes two decades after the intestate death of Mukesh’s father, Dhirubhai Ambani, a well-known industrialist, sparking a long public feud over control of assets between Mukesh and his younger brother Anil.

Discord and years of lawsuits and failed deals bankrupted Anil Ambani, who in 2008 was No. 6 on Forbes’ richest list and once owned a promising telecommunications company called Reliance Communications that went bankrupt a few years before Jio Infocomm entered the industry.

Jio Infocomm has shaken India’s telecom sector with its rampant pricing, which has forced some rivals out of the market and pushed others into the red.

Jio, which started offering mobile teleservices, has invested aggressively in services such as internet broadband and forged ties with handset makers to launch low-cost smartphones and provide 5G services.

Now India’s largest telecommunications operator, Jio Infocomm has 405.7 million wireless broadband subscribers as of April 30 and controls 35.5% of the market.

Last fiscal year, Jio Infocomm accounted for 10% of Reliance Industries’ total revenue and almost a quarter of its profits.

Reporting by Rama Venkat and Chris Thomas in Bengaluru and Munsif Vengattil in New Delhi Writing by Sayantani Ghosh Editing by Arun Koyyur and Mark Potter

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Source link