On Friday, Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani regained the tag of being Asia’s richest person with a net worth of $99.7 billion. He surpassed Adani Group chief Gautam Adani who held the position since the past few months as shares of his company soared.
On Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Ambani bagged the 8th spot while, Adani slipped to the 9th position with a total wealth of $98.7 billion.
In February this year, Adani overtook Ambani to become the richest Asian and the 6th richest person in world after a rally in his ports-to-power conglomerate.
So, the two have been swapping position at the top of Asia’s rich list for quite some time now.
However, even with Adani being richer than Ambani, Reliance Industries continued to be India’s most valuable company, with an 80 per cent jump in its value in last 2 years.
Ambani v/s Adani
Gautam Adani has been the biggest wealth creator during the pandemic, adding about $49 billion at a rate of Rs 6,000 crore per week.
For a long time, Mukesh Ambani has been the richest person in Asia on the Bloomberg index. But the main catch in this is that two of the Reliance Group’s major sources of revenue ─ Jio Platforms and Reliance Retail ─ are not listed on the bourses.
In contrast, the Adani Group comprises seven publicly traded companies. Some of these have soared more than 600% in the last two years as the group moved more towards green energy and infrastructure.
Shares of Adani Green and Adani Total Gas, a Mumbai-listed joint venture with the French firm Total SE, have surged more than 1,000 per cent since 2000. Adani Enterprises has advanced over 730 per cent, Adani Transmission more than 500 per cent and Adani Ports 95 per cent during the same period.
Reliance gains, Adani shares fall
Earlier this week, some shares that are part of Adani’s conglomerate took a massive beating on the stock exchanges.
Adani Green Energy, the group’s biggest firm by market value, led the rout, plunging a record 12 per cent in trading volume about nine times the average of the past three months.
Adani Total Gas, Adani Transmission and Adani Power fell by at least 5 per cent each.
Shares of Adani group plunged as investors adjusted their holdings to reflect change in composition and weighing in the MSCI India Index.
MSCI Inc published additions and deletions to its global indexes last month but the announcement didn’t detail changes to the weightings of individual stocks in its indexes. The changes took effect at close of trading on Tuesday and analysts said Adani Green’s weighting in the MSCI India Index was cut as it admitted new stocks.
On the other hand, shares of Reliance Industries hovered just shy of record high levels on Friday as they scaled over 3 per cent to one-month high of Rs 2,816.35.
This is the 2nd straight session when shares of Reliance has led the stock market rally and has jumped over 5 per cent in 2 days.
Both continue to bag big deals
The petrochemicals empire Ambani inherited from his father has diversified into consumer-oriented businesses and acquired a more glamorous sheen, including a $1 billion commercial centre in Mumbai packed with international brands, report by Bloomberg showed.
His clout is still indisputable, as Amazon discovered in a takeover battle where Ambani scooped up the stores of bankrupt Future Retail from right under the US giant’s nose.
According to a report in Reuters, Reliance will acquire dozens of small grocery and non-food brands as it targets building its own $6.5 billion consumer goods business to challenge foreign giants like Unilever.
It plans to build a portfolio of 50 to 60 grocery, household and personal care brands within six months and is hiring an army of distributors to take them to mom-and-pop stores and bigger retail outlets across the nation,
But while Ambani is going for the consumer, Adani is sticking mostly to infrastructure. That’s useful to New Delhi, not only to generate fiscal resources by monetising public assets but also as a foreign-policy tool.
Last month, Adani acquired Holcim AG’s cement business worth $10.5 billion. The purchase made Adani Group the second largest cement manufacturer in India with an annual capacity f atleast 70 million tonnes.
(With inputs from agencies)