Billionaire Anil-Ambani on Tuesday said that Reliance group’s company Reliance Naval is looking to bid for six submarines contracts worth Rs 40,000 crore. He made the announcement at the Annual General Meeting of its parent company Reliance Infrastructure. Earlier known as Reliance Defence and Engineering Ltd (RDEL), the company was renamed to Reliance Naval to reflect its focus on naval shipbuilding as its principal segment.
Anil Ambani’s led Reliance Infrastructure further plans to raise funds via rights issue to increase its stake in the company. RDEL (now, Reliance Naval), the erstwhile Pipavav Defence & Offshore Engineering, had reportedly got the bankers’ approval to exit a corporate debt restructuring exercise after reworking its loans worth over Rs 6,000 crore in April.
Speaking at the AGM, Anil Ambani said that India’s 90% of defence needs are imported which cannot continue for long and that it will become an export hub to Airbus and Boeing on very sensitive aircraft parts. Reliance Naval is one of the two private sector shipyards qualified to build large and tactical programmes of the Indian Navy and the Indian Coast Guard. The firm already has the credit being the first private sector company to building a warship in its kitty.
Earlier last year, RDEL (now, Reliance Naval) had got an approval from the Reserve Bank of India to exit the debt restructuring exercise upon refinancing its Rs 6,800 crore worth of loans with a longer maturity of 20 years and a reduced interest rate at 11%. The company’s exit from the debt rejig exercise comes after Reliance Infrastructure bought a 35% equity stake in Pipavav Defence & Offshore Engineering in December 2015 through an open offer, and reconstituted the board.
At the AGM, Anil Ambani also said that the Reliance Infrastructure is in talks with Japanese companies for the bullet project. The company is also planning to launch Infrastructure Investment Trusts to raise Rs 2,500 crore in the road sector.