Adani Group on Thursday clarified that Vinod Adani, elder brother of conglomerate's chairman Gautam Adani, is part of the "promoter group" of various listed entities within it.
"We would like to submit that Mr. Gautam Adani and Mr. Rajesh Adani are individual promoters of various listed entities within the Adani group and Mr. Vinod Adani is an immediate relative of the individual promoters. Accordingly, as per the applicable Indian regulations, Mr. Vinod Adani is part of the ‘promoter group’ of various listed entities within the Adani group. This fact has been submitted to Indian regulatory authorities from time to time in various disclosures," said Adani Group in a stock exchange filing.
Adani Group was responding to a news report that said Vinod Adani is the ultimate beneficiary of Ambuja Cements Ltd and ACC Ltd.
The report came months after US short seller Hindenburg Research alleged that Gautam Adani's elder brother Vinod Adani managed a network of offshore entities to facilitate fraud at Adani Group. The report by Morning Context, earlier this week, claimed that Vinod Adani controls entities that own Ambuja Cements and ACC, and not Adani Group.
In September last year, Adani Group informed that it had acquired Ambuja and ACC from Swiss cement major Holcim for $10.5 billion, becoming the country's second-largest cement manufacturer after Aditya Birla Group's UltraTech Cement. For the transaction, the Adani Group created a special-purpose vehicle called Endeavour Trade and Investment Ltd.
However, now the report claims that this entity is based in Mauritius and owned by Vinod Adani. "This means neither Adani Enterprises nor any of the Adani group's other listed companies in India or their subsidiaries acquired Ambuja Cements/ACC," the report said.
"The fact that Endeavour Trade and Investment Limited (an entity controlled by Mr. Vinod Adani), the Acquirer of ACC Limited and Ambuja Cements Limited, belongs to the Adani Group has been disclosed in the public offer document (Letter of Offer) dated August 19, 2022 on page 22, which is available at and also on the websites of Ambuja Cements Limited, stock exchanges and was also filed with the regulatory authority, SEBI," said Adani Group in its statement on Thursday.
In its scathing report published on January 24, the US short seller claimed that the ports-to-power conglomerate was engaged in a "brazen stock manipulation" and "accounting fraud".
The Hindenburg report claimed that Vinod Adani managed a vast labyrinth of offshore shell entities for Gautam Adani. The short-seller also said that it identified 38 Mauritius-based shell entities controlled by Vinod Adani or his close associates. Adani Group, however, rubbished the claim saying Vinod Adani did not have any role in group companies' day-to-day affairs.
"It has now emerged, according to the final offer letter issued by Ambuja Cements, that the ultimate beneficial owner of Endeavour is 'Mr Vinod Shantilal Adani and Mrs Ranjanben Vnod Adani' through entities based in Mauritius, Dubai, and the British Virgin Islands," the news report said.
Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra reacted to the report and said Adani Group is resorting to "deception of the highest order".
"'The Adani group does not own Ambuja Cements and ACC' - Deception of the highest order. One cannot make this stuff up. @SEBI_India and @CCI_India would have been provided all details!" she tweeted.
In another tweet, the TMC leader said Ambuja Cements reportedly had Rs 9,829 crore cash and cash equivalents on its books at the end of December 2022. "Am very keen to see cash position & related party (or rather suspicious) transactions of Ambuja Cements at end of this month! Kitna gayab aur kisko gaya!" she said.
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