The move from brothers in arms to brothers in charm took another step forward on Friday, as Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani (53) said he looked forward to a “harmonious and constructive relationship” with Anil (51).
The statement came exactly five years to the day when Mukesh and Anil split the Reliance empire in 2005.
With his mother Kokilaben, wife Nita and twin children Akash and Isha (both 18) looking on, the tightly-packed Birla Matoshri Sabhagriha Hall burst into applause when Mukesh said RIL was ready to supply gas to Anil’s power plants, including the proposed 7,800 MW at Dadri near Delhi, as and when they are ready to receive the fuel.
Anil was conspicuous by his absence.
Speaking to RIL’s 3.5 million shareholders in the company’s 36th annual general meeting, Mukesh unveiled his plans to enter the telecom and power businesses, a space so far restricted to him under a January 12, 2006 non-compete agreement with Anil.
In less than a month after RIL scrapped its non-compete pact with ADAG on May 23, Mukesh said he would double the company’s enterprise value to $160 billion (Rs 7,40,000 crore) in less than a decade. RIL is India's most valuable company with a market capitalisation of Rs 3,45,000 crore.,
Mukesh told shareholders that he plans to use RIL’s strong balance sheet and cash surplus of almost Rs 22,000 crore to fund coal, thermal and nuclear power plants, add capacity to produce polyester and chemicals to create “unprecedented value” for investors.
Terming RIL’s entry into power sector as a “game changing development”, Mukesh took no chances and immediately clarified that Reliance will not enter gas-based power generation until 2022, leaving the field open for Anil.