Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani today (Aug. 29) showcased his business empire’s future leadership.
The 65-year-old told the 45th Reliance Industries (RIL) annual general meet (AGM) that his three children were “confidently taking over the reins.”
“Akash and Isha have assumed leadership roles in Jio and Retail, respectively. Anant has also joined our new energy business with great zeal,” the chairman of the $217 billion Reliance Industries (RIL) said.
His comments come amid talk of a succession plan in one of Asia’s richest families.
Reliance’s succession plans
RIL’s investors have for long been eager to hear of such a plan apparently. The company’s ugly succession history is what keeps them seemingly wary.
Today, however, Ambani strongly hinted that his children will ultimately helm his conglomerate’s various units. RIL was founded by Ambani’s father Dhirubhai Ambani decades ago with a mere $13.
In June, Ambani resigned from the board of Jio, RIL’s telecom arm, handing over its responsibility to his elder son Akash Ambani. Similar transfers of responsibility also saw Isha Ambani and Anant Ambani taking over prominent positions in the empire.
In 2021, Anant Ambani joined Reliance New Energy Solar and Reliance New Solar Energy boards. These firms were set up to spearhead RIL’s billion-dollar bet on renewables.
Isha Ambani has a similar role at Reliance Retail Ventures.
Today, Ambani introduced her as the “leader” of Reliance’s retail business. Alongside, he announced RIL’s FMCG sector plans for this year.
Assuring investors of his children’s abilities, Ambani said he had been regularly mentoring them.
“All three have fully inherited our founder’s mindset. They are first among equals in a young team of leaders and professionals who are already doing amazing things at Reliance,” he said. “Of course, all of them are being mentored on a daily basis by our senior leaders, including myself and the Board of directors.”
RIL’s new investments
Mukesh Ambani made other announcements, too, during his 1.5-hour speech.
Jio’s 5G rollout, he said, would happen over the two months in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Kolkata.
“Within the next two months, by Diwali, we will launch Jio 5G across multiple key cities, including the metropolises of Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chennai. Subsequently, we plan to increase the Jio 5G footprint month after month,” he said. The rest of the country will get 5G by December 2023, he added.
Reliance, he said, will invest Rs75,000 crore in the oil-to-chemical business over five years.
The RIL share settled in the red, 0.72% lower than the previous day’s close, at Rs2,600 apiece on BSE.