Archive for October, 2013

Mukesh Ambani to enter the Chicken Business

October 25, 2013

Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is causing quite a stir in the market as it announced its intention to start and operate an exclusive chicken restaurant chain in India. Mukesh Ambani, through Reliance Retail has bought a 45 percent stake Two Sisters Food India(TSFI); a subsidiary of England basedTwo Sisters Food Group Ltd (2SFG). 2SFG, run by Ranjit Singh Boparan, is basically a chicken products company. Confirming the move, a source close to the development told TOI that the JV is setting up a plant to process chicken, fish and meat products. “Reliance Retail has already invested in a state-of-the-art food innovation lab to support new products,” he said.

2SFG supply retail chains, food processing and service industries in Europe with meat, chicken and fish products. The new alliance plans to enter the highly lucrative QSR (Quick service restaurant) segment in India and sell only chicken products. The new restaurant chain will be christened, ‘Chicken Came First.’2SFG is based in the Asian heartland of England – Birmingham. It was established in 1993 and has grown from a local brand to a truly international one. The company has manufacturing installations all over Europe including ones in Netherlands, Ireland and Poland. The company employs over 24,000 people and generated sales of 3 billion pounds last year. 2SFG was ranked 19th on the 2013 Sunday Times Top Track 100.

TSFI will supply Reliance Retail with chilled and frozen chicken products to begin with. After this, the Reliance Retail and TFSI joint venture, Chicken Came First will begin operations. This chain of restaurants will hope to make early in-roads into the Rs. 7,000 crore food services market and will stand out of the crowd with its specialized menu that caters specifically to the Indian consumer. The fact that MukeshAmbani owned Reliance Retail venturing into the QSR segment is not a surprising one; the sector is expected to grow at 30% YoY and would represent a very healthy revenue stream and could generate huge profits. It’s interesting to note that MukeshAmbani is backing this venture even though he is a vegetarian. This is a clear sign of it being a purely business-based decision.

The local QSR market is dominated by globally present brands. This market, at 63%, or 3,400 crore, projected to grow by 30% due to growth in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities. CRISIL estimates annual spending on restaurants in these cities to grow by up to 150% to Rs 3,750 crores per home.

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Nita Ambani Receives Honorary Doctorate

October 18, 2013

Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Viswa Mahavidyalaya SCSVMV University of Kanchipuram has awarded Reliance Foundation Chairperson Nita Ambani with an honorary doctorate. Nita Ambani is the wife of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani.

Te University conferred upon her the honorary doctorate in recognition of her work in the fields of education, philanthropy and social work. Nita Ambani is also the founder and chairperson of Dhirubhai Ambani International School in Mumbai.

SCSVMV University is a deemed to be University located at Enathur near Kanchipuram. The University was formed in 1993 under the stewardship of the Sri KanchiKamakotiPeetam Charitable Trust has a unique focus on integrating traditional knowledge with modern scientific practices.

Nita Ambani, speaking at the 17th convocation of SCSVMV University said, “My work has just started and there is so much more needs to achieve. I have spent the last two decades on building educational institutions.”

Nita Ambani’s work in the field of education has received widespread acclaim. She said, “I strongly believe that education should be made a national priority. Education is not a tool for development individual, community and the nation. It is the foundation for our future. It is empowerment to make choices and emboldens the youth to chase their dream.”

Others present during the convocation included University chancellor S Jayarama Reddy,Cognizant technology solutions Vice-Chairman R Lakshminarayanan and Kanchi seers – JayendraSaraswathi and VijayendraSaraswathi.

R. Lakshmi Narayanan, Vice Chairman of Cognizant Technology Solutions, a US-based information technology company with large operations in India, offered some career advice to the students at the convocation. He said students can go into teaching or research, take up a job or become entrepreneurs. He stressed on the need for entrepreneurs in India and urged them to look at it as a viable career option. Entrepreneurs have a huge impact on any society and also help in creating jobs for other he said.

Nita Ambani was praised widely for her efforts in rehabilitating children in Uttarakhand in light of the devastating floods. She opined that education was the bedrock was of a sustainable and vibrant society and this was a critical aspect in restoring normalcy to the region. Reliance Foundation immediately decided to build three new schools in the affection region to help the children there restart a normal life.

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RIL looks to acquire Oil Blocks in Venezuela

October 11, 2013

Mukesh Ambani owned Reliance Industries has ventured into the highly lucrative Venezuela’s exploration sector, strengthening ties between the Latin American nation and its top Indian customer.

Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) and the Venezuelan state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela, SA (PdVSA) have signed a Joint Study Agreement for Ayacucho Block 8 in Orinoco Oil Belt. As per the study agreement, both the parties will jointly evaluate the development plan for Ayacucho 8, said RIL in a statement on October 10th 2013.

Reliance, which operates the world’s biggest refining complex on India’s west coast at Jamnagar, last year signed a 15-year deal to buy up to 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) of heavy oil from PDVSA. RIL and PdVSA have also extended the term of this MOU signed between the parties last year by one year for continued cooperation.

Venezuela has been Reliance’s top crude oil supplier since May 2012.RIL was considering multi-billion dollar investments in two to three oil blocks offered by Venezuela as it looked at countries from Myanmar to Canada to expand its overseas energy assets.“We are looking at two things in Venezuela. One, we have a long-term (crude oil) supply contract and we are looking at enhancing the quantities under this contract, possibly from next year,” RIL executive director P.M.S. Prasad was quoted as saying.

A senior PDVSA executive said in New Delhi last year that the company was in talks for four blocks – Junin 1, Ayacucho 3, Ayacucho 8 and Boyaca 4.It is not clear whether Reliance is out of race for the remaining three blocks or still in negotiations with PDVSA.

Participation in Venezuelan oil exploration could help Reliance lock in supplies for its two Indian refineries that can handle heavy crude, which often costs less than lighter crude options and boosts refining margins.

Reliance’s two refineries at Jamnagar in western Gujarat state can process 1.2 million bpd oil, about 28 percent of India’s overall refining capacity. RIL currently imports about 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) of oil from Venezuela for processing at its twin refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat. It now wants to increase these volumes, possibly to 400,000 bpd.

RIL wants to lift the share of its own oil used in overall processing by the two plants from almost zero at present to 25 percent to 30 percent, its executive director P.M.S. Prasad told Reuters in December 2011.

The signing of the Joint Study Agreement for Ayacucho Block 8 and the extension of MOU marks further strengthening of the long standing relationship between RIL and PdVSA as well as between India and Venezuela.

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