The fear of coronavirus outbreak, coupled with the collapse in oil prices and market breakdown has hurt Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani’s net worth. India’s richest man slipped to the second spot in the Asia rankings, after losing close to $5.8 Bn from his net worth on Monday (March 9).
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Alibaba’s Jack Ma as Asia’s richest man. The list now shows the Alibaba founder with a $45.7 Bn fortune, almost $3.4 Bn more than Ambani’s latest net worth.
The coronavirus pandemic has impacted some of Alibaba’s businesses as well, however, the damage has been mitigated by increased demand for its cloud computing services and mobile apps. Ambani’s Reliance Industries, on the other hand, is still heavily reliant on the petrochemical business and revenue from its tech and digital services portfolio (Jio Platforms) is dwarfed by the former.
The Bloomberg Billionaires Index further revealed the net worth of other Indian tycoons such as the founder and chairman of HCL Shiv Nadar ($14.7 Bn); Kotak Mahindra Bank MD Uday Kotak ($13.4 Bn); chairman and CEO of ArcelorMittal Lakshmi Mittal ($9.83 Bn); and founder and chairman of Bharti Enterprises Sunil Mittal ($8.39 Bn) among others.
Additionally, the list also showed that most Indian businessmen’s were impacted by the global calamity to an extent in their rankings. In the overall world’s ranking, Ambani stood at 19th spot, falling from 13th spot last year, followed by Shiv Nadar (84), Uday Kotak (98), Lakshmi Mittal (144) and Sunil Mittal (181).
With the 25% collapse in oil prices due to Saudi Arabia’s measures to counter coronavirus, Reliance stock dropped nearly 12% on the NSE due to some panic-selling in the market.
Reliance is focussing on Jio and digital services for the next phase of its growth after being a largely petrochemical-reliant company until now. It has brought Reliance Jio telecom services and its array of digital services such as JioTV, JioSaavn and others under the new Jio Platforms Ltd.
Reliance has invested INR 1.7 Lakh Cr in Jio Platforms to compete against global players across segments. As a matter of fact, the company has recently launched JioMart to enter the ecommerce market in India.