Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) on August 29 said it would buy retail and wholesale business, as well as the logistics and warehousing business of the Future Group, for Rs 24,713 crore. The acquisition is being done as part of the scheme in which Future Group is merging certain companies carrying on the above-mentioned businesses into Future Enterprises Limited (FEL).Here are the key takeaways from the deal:
- This deal cements the position of Reliance Retail as the undisputed leader in the organised retail segment and adds muscle to the ongoing battle with Amazon for the Indian e-commerce market.
2. The deal is good news for lenders of Future Group who will now have secured outstanding loans protected as well as the retail ecosystem comprising small businesses and suppliers.
3. Reliance Retail, which was already the largest retailer in India by a long shot, gets even larger and bigger. Its network gets a big push in the cities, where 40 percent of Future stores are present.
4. The deal will help RIL’s retail business to expand its offline retail presence and get it ready to tap into Operator-to-Operator (O2O) as well as Business-to-Business (B2B) opportunities.
5. The Future Group houses leading retail formats, including supermarket chain Big Bazaar, upmarket food stores Foodhall, and bargain clothing chain Brand Factory. This gives them an edge into all these areas of business.
6. Biyani’s exit from a business he had painstakingly built over three decades was forced by a rising pile of debt and the searing pain wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic. This deal prevented the collapse of a vast retail group that would have otherwise been dragged through India’s bankruptcy court.
Disclaimer: Reliance Industries (RIL), which also owns Reliance Retail, is the sole beneficiary of Independent Media Trust which controls Network18 Media & Investments