Reliance looks at Nasdaq listing for Jio Platforms; IPO likely by 2021

In the past one month, five global players have picked up a 17.12 per cent stake in Jio Platforms for a total consideration of Rs 78,562 crore, valuing the company at Rs 4.91 trillion (or $73 billion).
An overseas listing may be on the cards for Jio Platforms, the digital and telecommunications subsidiary of Reliance Industries (RIL). According to sources aware of the development, work in this regard may commence soon after RIL sells 20-25 per cent in Jio Platforms and the government issues direct listing guidelines.

 

In the past one month, five global players have picked up a 17.12 per cent stake in Jio Platforms for a total consideration of Rs 78,562 crore, valuing the company at Rs 4.91 trillion (or $73 billion).

 

Highly placed sources said once the new guidelines for direct international listing were announced by the government, the company would look at various global stock markets. On May 17, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said Indian companies might be allowed direct overseas listing, without a simultaneous listing in the Indian market. Detailed guidelines are still in the works.

While RIL hasn’t zeroed in on its options yet, Nasdaq, the sought-after stock exchange for technology companies in the US, is being considered as the preferred destination for the listing.

 

E-mail queries sent to RIL remained unanswered till the time of going to press.

“While a foreign listing may be a departure from RIL’s core belief of enhancing existing investors’ share value, international platforms may offer better liquidity to absorb a listing of Jio’s size when compared to the Indian market,” said a person in the know.

 

Morgan Stanley is likely to be appointed the lead banker to manage the overseas listing, while Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Citibank may also be roped in for the IPO, another source informed.

 

In April last year, RIL had said it would list Jio in the next five years. RIL struck its first major deal with US social media giant Facebook on April 22, to acquire 9.99 per cent in Jio Platforms. Later, RIL sold a 7.24 per cent stake to various private equity players such as Silver Lake, Vista Equity Partners, General Atlantic, and KKR, which have taken minority stakes of 1.15-2.32 per cent each so far in Jio Platforms.

 

Investors such as Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Company are also likely to pick up similar minority interests in Jio Platforms, though these transactions may fructify in the next one to two months, sources said.     

Anant Ambani joins Jio Platforms board    

 
Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani's youngest son, Anant, has been appointed additional director on the board of Jio Platforms. His elder siblings — Akash and Isha Ambani — had joined the boards of RIL’s telecom and retail ventures in 2014. Anant ( 25) has also been involved with activities of Reliance Foundation and the group’s sports business. 

 

 



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