Reliance Industries announced on Thursday that the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia will invest ₹ 9,555 crore (approximately $1.3 billion) for an equity stake of 2.04% into Reliance Retail Ventures (RRVL). With this investment RRVL is valued at ₹4.587 lakh crore (~US$62.4 billion). The investment in RRVL follows PIF’s earlier acquisition of a 2.32% stake in Jio Platforms for ₹11,367 crore. Other global funds like General Atlantic, Silver Lake, TPG Capital, Mubadala, the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and GIC have also had made investments in RRVL earlier.
Reliance has effectively replicated the spree of investments enjoyed by Jio Platforms, which is the controlling entity for the telecom operator, in the past. JioMart, despite its branding, is owned by RRVL, and the company plans to balloon it into a serious competitor in the Indian e-commerce space. JioMart has currently started with grocery deliveries from kirana stores and from Reliance’s own retail supply network in a couple hundred towns and cities. It is currently in its beta phase.
Aiming at retail dominance, Reliance recently announced that it would acquire the Future Group’s retail businesses like Big Bazaar, but that deal seems to be threatened by litigation from Amazon, which argues that they were entitled to a right of first refusal. The Future Group said it would not comply with an emergency stay on that deal obtained from an arbitration panel in Singapore, and will challenge any attempts to enforce it.
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