Mubadala to invest Dh3.1bn in Ambani’s Reliance Retail Ventures

Investment is the second this year in a Reliance Industries subsidiary following a $1.2bn purchase of a stake in Jio Platforms in June

Mubadala Investment Company will invest Dh3.1 billion for a 1.4% stake in Mukesh Ambani’s retail venture. Pawan Singh / The National

Mubadala Investment Company (Mubadala), Abu Dhabi's strategic investment fund, will invest Dh3.1 billion for a 1.4 per cent stake in Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail Ventures. The deal values the business at $58.5bn.

This is the second investment by Mubadala in a Reliance Industries subsidiary. The company invested $1.2bn in Jio Platforms earlier this year.

"We are pleased to deepen our relationship with Reliance Industries through this investment in Reliance Retail Ventures,” Khaldoon Al Mubarak, managing director and group chief executive of Mubadala Investment Company, said.

“Their vision is the inclusive transformation of India’s consumer economy through the power of digitisation, creating opportunities and market access for millions of small businesses across the country, and we are committed to supporting the company’s continuing development."

Reliance Retail Ventures runs supermarkets, India’s largest consumer electronics chain store, a cash and carry wholesaler, fast-fashion outlets and JioMart, an online grocery store. The unit operates almost 12,000 stores in nearly 7,000 towns and reported 1.63 trillion rupees ($22.26bn) in revenue in the year to the end of March 2020.

"We value the partnership with a knowledge-rich organisation like Mubadala and acknowledge their confidence in our mission to strengthen the core of India’s retail sector – the millions of small retailers, merchants and shopkeepers – through the power of technology," Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries, said. "Mubadala’s investment and guidance will be an invaluable support in this journey.”

A number of other global investors are also taking stakes in Reliance Retail Ventures. Earlier this week, US-based private equity firm General Atlantic announced an investment of $498m for a 0.84 per cent stake in the company. Two other private equity firms, KKR and Silver Lake, have invested $754m and $1bn, respectively.

Last month, Reliance Industries agreed to buy the retail and wholesale business and the logistics and warehousing unit of its rival Future Group in a 247.1bn rupees deal, growing its share of the country's retail sector.

Future Group owns about 2,000 retail stores across 400 cities and towns in India. Its portfolio includes flagship supermarket chain Big Bazaar, apparel stores Brand Factory and FBB along with a growing chain of small neighbourhood stores including EasyDay, Heritage Fresh, WH Smith and 7-Eleven.

Mubadala, which has a $232bn portfolio spanning five continents, has interests in a range of sectors from aerospace and healthcare to real estate, technology, utilities and oil and gas.