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Wealth: With $97.6 billion, Gautam Adani is again Asia’s richest man

Wealth: With $97.6 billion, Gautam Adani is again Asia’s richest man

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Virendra Pandit 

 

New Delhi: India’s billionaire Gautam Adani has reclaimed the top position on the Asian rich list after the Supreme Court reprieve this week.

His net worth rose USD 7.7 billion in a day to USD 97.6 billion, making him reclaim the top spot in Asia from compatriot Reliance chief Mukesh Ambani, whose net worth is USD 97 billion, Bloomberg reported on Friday.

Reacting to the apex court judgment, Adani said: Satyamev Jayate.

After a roller-coaster ride on the wealth rankings in 2023, Adani returned to being Asia’s wealthiest person, days after the Supreme Court said no new probes were needed into Hindenburg Research’s claims against the tycoon’s conglomerate in January 2022 that led to a meltdown in Adani stock prices.

The comeback of the first-generation entrepreneur, who started as a diamond trader in the 1980s, caps an eventful year for Adani’s ports-to-power conglomerate.

Despite denying Hindenburg’s allegations of corporate fraud, the Adani Group lost more than USD 150 billion in market value at one point last year and spent months wooing back investors, and lenders, repaying debt, and assuaging regulatory concerns.

The Adani Group’s stocks rallied rapidly after the Supreme Court this week ordered market regulator, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), to conclude its ongoing investigation into the conglomerate within three months and said no more probes were needed, effectively drawing a line under the year-long short-seller saga.

The court reprieve stoked a USD 13.3 billion wealth gain for Adani — the world’s largest this year — after logging one of the world’s largest wealth losses in 2023.

Adani, whose conglomerate has committed an investment of USD 100 billion over the next decade for green transition across its businesses, is also back to rapidly diversifying his empire beyond his coal trading origins into data centers, artificial intelligence, urban development, airports, and media.

 

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