Billionaire Mukesh Ambani stepped down on Tuesday from the role of director of Reliance Jio, the telecommunication extension of Reliance Industries Limited. His 30-year-old son and non-executive director, Akash Ambani, was appointed chairman of the board of Reliance Jio, according to a regulatory filing by Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd.
Ambani who is ranked among the world’s top 10 billionaires. Hence, had first indicated last year that his children would have significant roles in the family’s business empire.
Further, Bloomberg News reported last year that the mogul’s preferred succession plan shares elements with that of Walmart Inc’s Walton family. Hence, it is a framework that would allow the biggest transfer of wealth in recent times.
Mukesh Ambani’s succession plan
Ambani, 65, has three children – twins Akash and Isha and youngest son Anant.
Akash and Isha are both on the Board of Directors of Jio as well as Reliance Retail. Which houses the conglomerate’s ambitious bets in India’s brick-and-mortar space. Anant is a part of the Board of Directors of renewable energy and oil and chemical units of Reliance. It is being said that he may hand over the reins of the retail business to Isha, 30, who is married to Anand Piramal.
Reliance has three broad businesses – oil refining and petrochemicals, retail and digital services that include telecom. Mukesh Ambani will continue to be the chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries Ltd. Also, he will also continue to be the chairman of Jio Platforms Ltd – the flagship company. That owns all Jio digital services brands including Reliance Jio Infocomm.
As part of that plan, Ambani, his wife Nita, and three children. Would have stakes in the new entity overseeing Reliance and be on its board. Along with a few of Ambani’s long-term confidantes as advisers.
Also, according to Sankaran Manikutty, a former professor who taught at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. And has extensively worked on family businesses, telecommunications and strategy in emerging economies. “It shows a well-planned succession plan, Ambani just ensured the continuity of the business. For now, nothing will change for the conglomerate, but Mukesh Ambani will be around to guide the next generation.”