Reliance Industries Ltd shares reached an all-time high after its subsidiary Jio Platforms Ltd announced it has received another large investment. The latest to join the list of marquee investors in Jio Platforms is Mubadala Investment Company, the Abu Dhabi-based sovereign wealth fund.
Mubadala’s investment of ₹9093 crore for a 1.85% stake takes the total tally of funds raised to as high as ₹87655 crore ($11.6 billion at current exchange rates). It seems like it has already achieved its planned target ahead of an initial public offering of shares.
Recall that in its March quarter earnings presentation, Reliance had said it has achieved half of its targeted value unlocking in Jio Platforms. This was after Facebook, Inc. made a strategic investment of ₹43574 crore for a 10% stake in the company.
Since then, Silver Lake, Vista Equity Partners, General Atlantic, KKR and now Mubadala have matched Facebook’s outlay, with a cumulative investment of ₹44081 crore in the company. Of course, they bought shares at a slightly higher valuation compared to Facebook. So while Facebook got a 10% stake, these investors together have a 9% stake. If the plan is to have a 20% share for outside investors, perhaps Jio Platforms is just another deal away from ending its fund-raising spree.
The Mubadala deal values JPL at an enterprise value (EV) of ₹5.16 lakh crore. This is broadly in line with the Street’s EV estimates for the business. But note that that pre-IPO deals assume that fair value is generally higher. On listing, therefore, the general expectation is that Jio Platforms will be valued much higher than what the Street had pegged its valuations at.
All eyes are now on the much awaited potential Jio Platforms initial share sale. Reports have said the company is preparing for an overseas listing of its digital subsidiary. This would peg valuations to technology giants such as Amazon, Apple and Microsoft. Reliance’s recent presentation included a slide showing ten year market capitalisation growth of technology stocks versus aggregate energy sector market cap (S&P). It added, “Asset-light technology companies created more value over the last decade than aggregate market capital of energy companies in the S&P.”
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