India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani owned Reliance Industries acquires Hamleys

India’s richest man Mukesh Ambani’s firm Reliance Industries (RIL) acquired the British toy retailer Hamleys.

RIL which runs the world’s biggest single-location crude oil refinery in western India is transforming itself into a consumer retail chain and telecom company.

Through its Reliance Brands subsidiary, the company signed an agreement to buy Hamleys from Hong Kong-listed C Banner International Holdings.

The firm did not disclose the  the price, but in 2015 C Banner had bought it for US$ 130.2 million from France’s Groupe Ludendo. The acquisition marks the billionaire Mukesh Ambani owned Reliance Industries to purchase first overseas retail brand.

Chief executive of Reliance Brands, Darshan Mehta said, “The worldwide acquisition of the iconic Hamleys brand and business places Reliance into the frontline of global retail.” Reliance Retail already had the the licence to sell Hamleys products in India.

Hamleys founded in 1760, withstood several global recessions and even the world war bombings, but has changed hands several times. The toy seller runs 167 stores across 18 countries, the majority of which are in India. Reliance who owns the master franchise, operates 88 Hamleys stores across 29 Indian cities.

Reliance who is leading the telecom space after it’s launch couple of years back was looking to go beyond its traditional refining and petrochemical business. The company was driving record profits despite oil price volatility and slowing global demand.

 Source : Various