Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani sets goals for children as they step up at Reliance

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Billionaire Mukesh Ambani outlined his ambitions for various businesses under his flagship Reliance Industries Ltd. that are now helmed by his three children, in a clear sign that leadership transition was firmly underway at India’s largest company by market value.

Under elder son Akash Ambani’s chairmanship, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. should aim to provide “unique digital products and solutions after emerging as India’s largest wireless-service operator that rolled out world’s fastest 5G network,” the 65-year-old Ambani said. He was speaking at an internal Reliance event, according to the copy of a speech shared by the company on Thursday.

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Reliance’s retail business run by Akash’s twin, Isha, has “grown rapidly with the widest and deepest reach in India,” he said. The retailer should now aim to expand further, providing more jobs and revenues for various partners along its supply chain, according to Ambani.

‘Crystal clear’

The gigafactories being set up for Reliance’s green energy ventures, under the stewardship of his youngest son, Anant Ambani, “are making rapid progress,” Ambani said. “The goals before our New Energy Team are crystal clear. Enable India to achieve security and self-sufficiency in energy by reducing the dependence on imports.”

Isha Ambani and Akash Ambani, children of Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, pose for a photograph as they arrive to attend the company’s annual general meeting in Mumbai, India, on July 5, 2018. (Reuters)
Isha Ambani and Akash Ambani, children of Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, pose for a photograph as they arrive to attend the company’s annual general meeting in Mumbai, India, on July 5, 2018. (Reuters)

Asia’s second-richest person is trying to oversee an orderly generational transition during his chairmanship of the $207 billion retail-to-refining conglomerate after firming up succession plans earlier this year.

Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, poses with his wife Nita Ambani and son Anant Ambani before addressing the company's annual general meeting in Mumbai, India,on July 5, 2018. (Reuters)
Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, poses with his wife Nita Ambani and son Anant Ambani before addressing the company's annual general meeting in Mumbai, India,on July 5, 2018. (Reuters)

The tycoon wants to avoid a repeat of the fraternal feud he faced after his father and Reliance founder, Dhirubhai Ambani, died without a will in 2002. This triggered an ugly and a very public power struggle between Mukesh and his younger brother, Anil, who were part of the family business at that time.

The battle between the brothers snowballed to the point that three years after Dhirubhai’s death, their mother was forced to intervene and divvy up Reliance businesses as part of a truce pact.

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