Mumbai: Asia’s richest individual Mukesh Ambani has now joined Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in the $100 billion club as Reliance Industries’ stock climbed to a record high on Friday. As per Bloomberg Billionaires Index, the Reliance Chairman & Managing Director is now worth $100.6 billion and has officially joined 11 other men in the world’s most exclusive wealth club.
Mukesh Ambani had inherited the oil-refining and petrochemicals businesses of his late father Dhirubhai Ambani’s empire back in 2005. Since then, Ambani has sought to transform his energy business into a retail, technology, and e-commerce juggernaut.
Jio, the telecommunications unit which was launched by Ambani in 2016, has already become the dominant carrier in India. Last year, Ambani’s retail and technology ventures raised about $27 billion by selling stakes to global powerhouse investors such as Google, Facebook, and Silver Lake, among others.
Earlier this year in June, Ambani had revealed an ambitious push into green energy production with a planned investment of $10 billion across three years, Last month, Ambani had stated that his company would “aggressively” pursue production of cheaper green hydrogen. This falls in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ambition of turning India into a global hub for clearer fuel in order to combat climate change and to cut down on the country’s energy imports.
However, fossil fuel still plays a huge part at Reliance, accounting for almost 60% of its $73 billion annual revenue. Its oil-to-chemical business has now become a separate unit and talks are underway to onboard Saudi Arabian Oil Company — also known popularly as Saudi Aramco — as an investor, reported Bloomberg.
“Mukesh Ambani is at the forefront of creating new businesses with new emerging technologies,” noted Chakri Lokapriya, chief investment officer at TCG Asset Management Co. in Mumbai. “Creating businesses of scale at speed brings execution challenges, but he has demonstrated his capabilities,” they added.
Mukesh Ambani has added $23.4 billion to his wealth just this year.