- Reliance Power, majority-owned by Anil Ambani, is India’s leading private sector power generation and coal resources company
- The abrupt increase in Reliance Power’s stocks, has elicited a warrant for explanation from the National Stock Exchange of India and BSE
Shares of Reliance Power (NSE: RPOWER) have been volatile after the Indian electric company
secured a long-term debt agreement for up to 12 billion rupees ($150.4 million) from private equity firm Varde Partners, a US based investment firm focused on distressed assets in India.
RPOWER announced the deal on Sept. 5, sending its shares surging and at close of trading, the company stock price had risen 9.9% to 23.30 rupees. On Sept. 6, the company’s stocks dropped 6.0% at close of trading to 21.95 rupees.
The abrupt increase in Reliance Power’s stocks, albeit short lived, elicited a warrant for explanation from the National Stock Exchange of India Ltd. and BSE Ltd. In its response, the company said it couldn’t comment on the price movement and assured that it will make an announcement when necessary.
Perhaps more alarming is the climb in RPOWER’s share price before the announcement. In the two days before the announcement was confirmed, RPOWER’s shares climbed 37%.
Reliance’s Power in India
Reliance Power is an electric power generation, transmission and distribution company based in Mumbai, India. It is the country’s leading private sector power generation and coal resources company with one of the largest portfolio of power projects in the private sector, based on coal, gas, hydro and renewable energy. It has an operating portfolio of 5,945 megawatts.
A member of the Reliance Group conglomerate, the power company has a market capitalization of $992.8 million. In the quarter ended June 30, the company recorded a loss attributable to owners of its parent at 708.4 million rupees against a profit of 122.8 million rupees in the prior-year period.
To support its future plans, the company is considering raising fresh capital from both domestic and international investors. Apart from the recent agreement with Varde Partners, Reliance Power is considering an issuance of equity shares, equity-linked securities or convertible warrants to amass funds that it can utilize in the long run. The company’s board will meet September 8 to consider their future fund-raising plan.
Operating within the Ambani Conglomerate
Reliance Power forms part of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, which is founded majority-owned by Anil Dhirubhai Ambani. Anil is also the chairman of Reliance Power.
Anil is the youngest son of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani, the chairman and managing director of Fortune 500 company Reliance Industrial (NSE: RELIANCE), which is also the most valuable company in India.
The brothers divided their father’s business empire a decade ago. While Mukesh, who was Asia’s richest man until fellow Indian billionaire Gautam Adani surpassed him, continued expanding his businesses, Anil is currently having troubles with companies defaulting and being put under administration. Nikkei Asia reported that Anil even declared himself to have a personal net worth of zero.
Reliance Power’s affiliate, Reliance Capital, is currently on the market with an investor group including the Hinduja Group and Oaktree Capital offering 45 billion rupees for the diversified financial services company, Economic Times of India reported. Also on offer are India’s fifth-largest privately owned general insurance company, a stockbroker, a stake in an asset manager and Reliance Capital’s 51% share in a life insurance venture with Japan’s Nippon Life, among other assets.
While it is yet to be seen if the current troubles of its affiliates will spill through Reliance Power, its recent loss will definitely not boost investor confidence. Furthermore, the company’s fundraising initiatives are hardly proving that it is in a very secure position in terms of capital.