New Delhi, October 27
Future Retail Ltd (FRL) will go into liquidation if its deal to sell assets to Reliance Industries (RIL) fails, the group told a Singapore arbitrator while arguing against Amazon.com Inc’s bid to scupper the deal, a legal order showed.
Amazon on Sunday won an injunction from a Singapore arbitrator to halt FRL’s deal to sell assets to Reliance. Amazon alleged FRL had breached certain contract provisions it entered into last year in a separate deal with the US firm.
The dispute centres around FRL’s decision in August to sell its retail, wholesale, logistics and some other businesses to Reliance for $3.38 billion, including debt.
Amazon argues that a 2019 deal it had with a Future unit had clauses saying the Indian group couldn’t sell its retail assets to anyone on a “restricted persons” list, including any firms from Reliance chief Mukesh Ambani’s group. The deal specified any disputes would be arbitrated under Singapore International Arbitration Centre rules.
An order by the arbitrator reveals how Amazon argued that Future breached agreements which barred it from selling retail assets to entities, including Reliance, whose boss Ambani is Asia’s richest man. It also shows the level of concern at Future if the deal breaks. — Reuters