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Forbes’ released its 35th Annual World’s Billionaires List and Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani has been listed as India’s richest billionaire with a net worth of $84.5 billion. Ambani is followed by Adani Group chief Gautam Adani, with a net worth of $50.5 billion. According to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index, he beat Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk in terms of wealth amassed in 2021 (Adani’s net worth rose from $16.2 billion in 2021 to $50 billion).
Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Mukesh Ambani accomplished a fund-raising feat, garnering $35 billion through a string of deals to achieve his target of reducing his flagship Reliance Industries’ net debt to zero by 2021.
“He also sold a third of telecom unit Jio to marquee investors such as Facebook and Google and offloaded 10 per cent of Reliance Retail to private equity firms such as KKR and General Atlantic, plus concluded a $7.3 billion rights issue of Reliance shares,” Forbes said.
India’s second-richest man in 2021, Gautam Adani, has also diversified the group’s business and has taken a significant share in India’s airport management and operations business, controlling about a quarter of the country’s airports.
Adani acquired a 74 per cent stake in Mumbai International Airport, the country’s second-busiest, last September. He also sold 20 per cent in his listed renewables firm, Adani Green Energy, to French energy giant Total for $2.5 billion.
The third richest Indian is HCL founder Shiv Nadar as per the Forbes list of India’s 10 Richest Billionaires 2021, with a net worth of $23.5 billion.Last July, Nadar stepped down as chairman of $9.9 billion (revenues) HCL Technologies, handing over the position to his daughter, Roshni Nadar Malhotra.
Avenue Supermarts’ founder Radhakishan Damani ($16.5 billion) and Kotak Mahindra Bank MD Uday Kotak ($15.9 billion) took the fourth and the fifth spot in the list.
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