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亚洲首富即将推出电商网站,挑战亚马逊和沃尔玛

P R Sanjai, 彭博社 2019年10月31日

这家石化集团将把增长重心转向数据和数字服务。

亿万富翁穆凯什·安巴尼朝着为印度打造电商巨头的目标又迈进了一步:他宣布计划成立一家价值240亿美元的数字服务类控股公司,该公司将成为他主宰印度互联网购物的主要工具。

安巴尼的公司信实工业(Reliance Industries)的董事会批准了一项提案,同意向该全资子公司投资1.08万亿卢比(150亿美元),该公司将把这笔资金转投给集团旗下的电信企业Reliance Jio Infocomm。信实工业于10月25日表示,Jio公司目前拥有6500亿卢比(92亿美元)资本,这一系列的资本转移将让Jio在2020年3月前基本实现零债务。

亚洲首富的这一举动,说明这家石化集团未来将把增长重心转向数据和数字服务;该集团正在打造一个在线平台,在印度国内和亚马逊(Amazon)以及沃尔玛(Walmart)的Flipkart Online Services Pvt.等同类服务开展竞争。安巴尼于今年8月向股东表示,包括零售在内的新业务未来几年可能会为信实贡献一半的收益,目前这一比例约为32%。

有了这家新的控股公司,安巴尼也在为首次公开募股(IPO)做准备,他誓要在五年内完成IPO。自2016年Jio推出4G网络以来,该公司已经以逾3.5亿的用户数量跃居印度首位。安巴尼还一直开展收购和股权收购,以建立合作伙伴网络,为他的电子商务计划奠定基础。

“由于我们的数字生态系统覆盖范围广、规模大,已经有潜在战略合作伙伴向我们表达了强烈兴趣。”安巴尼在一份声明中表示,“我们将为平台公司引入合适的合作伙伴,为信实工业的股东创造并释放重要价值。”

信实工业可能效仿阿里巴巴集团(Alibaba Group Holdings)和Alphabet的模式,通过非强制性可转换优先股的方式向这家控股公司注资。信实工业称,该部门将获得母公司对Jio的6500亿卢比的股权投资。

在股权注入后,Jio公司将把价值1.08万亿卢比的债务转移到母公司的一个子公司,这样Jio除了和电视有关的债务就几乎零负债。

精简结构

花旗集团(Citigroup)在一份研究报告中表示:“Jio重组资本结构的目的是,将所有数字资产整合到一个实体之下,减少该实体的债务并精简结构,以提高其吸引力,最终实现货币化。”

1999年,英语教师马云白手起家创建阿里巴巴;现在,安巴尼正利用自己工业帝国的影响力,通过连接零售商和消费者,为印度打造类似的企业。市值4540亿美元的阿里巴巴公布,在截至今年3月的一年中,企业利润达130亿美元,营收560亿美元。这家中国巨头的扩张已经将夫妻店囊括在内,这也是安巴尼希望加以开拓的一个重要领域。

今年以来,信实工业的股价上涨了28%,而标普孟买交易所敏感指数(S&P BSE Sensex index)仅上涨了8.8%。该股目前股价接近历史高点,10月29日印度假期结束后恢复交易。

安巴尼在今年8月表示,信实工业已经为Jio斥资近500亿美元, Jio以免费电话和平价数据杀入市场,迫使一些竞争对手退出或合并,撼动了整个行业。

首席财务官斯里坎斯在10月初表示,截至9月30日,Jio的债务约为8400亿卢比。截至9月,该公司该季度的独立利润为99亿卢比,营收为1235.4亿卢比。

根据彭博亿万富翁指数,这位富豪的净资产约为560亿美元。他还透露,计划将信实集团20%的石油和化工业务以750亿美元的企业价值出售给沙特阿拉伯石油公司(Saudi Arabian oil Co.)。近几年,安巴尼在新业务上花了几十亿美元,他目前正在清理母公司的资产负债表,目标是让它在不到两年的时间里实现零负债净额。(财富中文网)

译者:Agatha

Billionaire Mukesh Ambani moved a step closer to creating an e-commerce giant for India, unveiling plans to set up a $24 billion digital-services holding company that would become the main vehicle in his ambition to dominate the country’s internet shopping space.

The board of Ambani’s Reliance Industries approved a proposal to plow 1.08 trillion rupees ($15 billion) into the fully owned subsidiary, which will in turn invest that amount in Reliance Jio Infocomm, the conglomerate’s telecommunications venture. A series of capital transfers would make Jio, which already has capital of 650 billion rupees ($9.2 billion), almost debt free by March 2020, the parent said Oct. 25.

The move by Asia’s richest man is the latest sign of the oil-to-petrochemicals group’s pivot toward data and digital services for future growth, as it builds an online platform to take on the likes of Amazon and Walmart’s Flipkart Online Services Pvt. in India. Ambani told shareholders in August that the new businesses, including retail, are likely to contribute half of Reliance’s earnings in a few years, versus about 32% now.

With the new holding firm, Ambani is also readying the businesses for an initial public offering, which he has vowed to complete within five years. Since Jio’s 4G network rolled out in 2016, the carrier has vaulted to the top in India with more than 350 million users. Ambani has also been stitching together a network of partners through acquisitions and stake purchases to build a backbone for his e-commerce plans.

“Given the reach and scale of our digital ecosystem, we have received strong interest from potential strategic partners,” Ambani said in a statement. “We will induct the right partners in our platform company, creating and unlocking meaningful value for RIL shareholders.”

Reliance Industries will invest the money in the holding company—likely on the lines of Alibaba Group Holdings and Alphabet—through optionally convertible preference shares. The unit will acquire the parent’s equity investment of 650 billion rupees in Jio, according to Reliance Industries.

Following the equity infusion, Reliance Jio will transfer liabilities worth 1.08 trillion rupees to a subsidiary of the parent, turning Jio almost debt free, excluding airwave-related liabilities.

Streamlining Structure

“The reorganization of Jio’s capital structure is intended at consolidating all digital assets under one entity, reducing debt at this entity and streamlining the structure to make it attractive for eventual monetization,” Citigroup said in a research report.

While former English teacher Jack Ma started Alibaba in 1999 from scratch, Ambani is using the heft of his empire to build something similar for India by connecting retailers and consumers. Alibaba, whose market value is $454 billion, reported a profit of $13 billion in the year to March, on a revenue of $56 billion. The Chinese giant’s expansion has included mom-and-pop shops—a key segment Ambani is also seeking to tap.

Shares of Reliance Industries have rallied 28% this year, compared with an 8.8% gain in the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex index. The stock, near an all-time high, resumed trading on October 29 when India returns from a holiday.

Ambani said in August that Reliance Industries has spent almost $50 billion on Jio, whose entry with free calls and cheap data pushed some rivals to exit or merge in a consolidation that shook up the industry.

Jio’s debt stood at about 840 billion rupees as on Sept. 30, Chief Financial Officer V. Srikanth said earlier October. It had a stand-alone profit of 9.9 billion rupees for the quarter through September on revenue of 123.54 billion rupees.

The tycoon, whose net worth is about $56 billion as per the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, has also revealed a plan to sell 20% of Reliance’s oil and chemicals business to Saudi Arabian Oil Co. at an enterprise value of $75 billion. After years of spending billions of dollars on the new businesses, Ambani is cleaning up the parent’s balance sheet, with the goal of making it free of net debt in less than two years.

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