With a net worth increase of USD 12.1 billion (Rs 77,000 cr) this year, Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani has become the second-richest man in Asia. India’s richest man, Ambani has overtaken Hong Kong-based Li Ka-Shing who until now was the second-richest person in Asia.
According to the Bloomberg’s Billionaire Index, Ambani’s net worth has risen to USD 34.8 billion (around Rs 2.2 lakh cr), making him the 19th richest person in the world, a drastic jump from 29 at the end of 2016. The increase in the net worth of the chief of Reliance Industries comes partially from the rise in stock price of the energy major, which has made major bets on the retail and telecom industries.
Reliance shares recently hit a new high after its subsidiary Jio recently unveiled the Jio-Phone, an advanced VoLTE feature phone that comes free of cost (apart from Rs 1,500 three-year security deposit). The move comes after new entrant Jio shook up the Indian telecom market with groundbreaking tariffs that made voice calls free and provided access to cheap data to Indians.
It took the telecom company just nine months after its inception with a free introductory offer to rope in 117.3 million users. Jio is now India’s fourth-largest operator, according to government data compiled by Bloomberg. Reliance has also invested heavily in its refining and petrochemicals business, with about USD 18 billion worth of project investments expected to come on stream.