In a clear sign of succession planning, billionaire Anil Ambani is planning to induct his younger son, Jai Anshul Ambani, on the board of Reliance Infrastructure (RInfra) as an executive director. Anil Ambani’s elder son Jai Anmol Ambani has already been inducted on the board of Reliance Capital in 2016.
Insiders said the induction of Anshul would coincide with the birthday of the late patriarch of Reliance Group Dhirubhai Ambani in the last week of December. Both brothers will be groomed by Anil Ambani himself who is the chairman of both companies.
When contacted, an Reliance Infrastructure spokesperson said: “As a matter of policy, we do not comment on market speculations. However, there is no such proposal on the table.”
With this induction, one more person from the next generation of Ambani has now joined the family business with Mukesh Ambani’s children Akash and Isha joining Reliance Jio board. Anant Ambani, the youngest son of Mukesh, is yet to join any company.
Corporate insiders said both billionaire brothers, after their own bitter experience, want to make succession planning clear as early as possible. "Any public fracas over family wealth ultimately hurts the family name. So it is better for every family to make succession planning clear as early as possible," said a Mumbai-based lawyer, asking not to be quoted.
Anshul is being inducted on the RInfra board at a time when the company is taking several steps to reduce its debt.
Anil Ambani had said the company was undergoing a transformation to being an asset-light, high-growth, and high-dividend one.
The company is also looking to sell some road projects to become debt-free by 2019. With zero debt, this will help the next generation to steer the company according to its plans.