Reliance Industries, one of India’s biggest conglomerates, said it has become debt free on a net basis, meaning that it now owes less money to its creditors than it stands to receive from its debtors.
This, it said, is thanks largely to the Rs 1.16 lakh cr that it has raised for a range of foreign investors, including Facebook and General Atlantic.
“The combined capital raised has no precedence globally in such a short time. Both of these are also unprecedented in Indian corporate history and have set new benchmarks. This is even more remarkable that this was achieved amidst a global lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the company said.
It said, thanks to the investments, such third party investors now hold 24.7% of Jio Platforms, which owns and operates India’s largest telecom network.
Besides the Rs 1.16 lakh cr raised by its subsidiary Jio, RIL also raised Rs 53,124 cr on its own by offering fresh shares to its existing shareholders, a practice known as a rights issue.
“Our net-debt was ₹ 161,035 crore, as on 31st March 2020. With these investments, RIL has become NET DEBT-FREE.”
Jio Platforms has raised money from the likes of Silver Lake, Vista Equity Partners, General Atlantic, KKR, Mubadala, ADIA, TPG, L Catterton and PIF since April 22, 2020.
“PIF’s investment marks the end of Jio Platforms’ current phase of induction of financial partners,” it added.
The RIL Rights Issue, which was subscribed 1.59 times, was not only the largest ever in India, but also the largest in the world by a non-financial entity in the last ten years, it said.
On 12th August 2019, Chairman Mukesh Ambani had said that his company will become a net-debt free company before 31st March 2021.
“Exceeding the expectations of our shareholders and all other stakeholders, again and yet again, is in the very DNA of Reliance. Therefore, on the proud occasion of becoming a net debt-free company, I wish to assure them that Reliance in its Golden Decade will set even more ambitious growth goals, and achieve them,” he added.
RIL is India’s largest private sector company, with a consolidated turnover of INR 659,205 crore ($87.1 billion), cash profit of INR 71,446 crore ($9.4 billion), and net profit of INR 39,880 crore ($5.3 billion) for the year ended March 31, 2020.
RIL’s activities span hydrocarbon exploration and production, petroleum refining and marketing, petrochemicals, retail and digital services.