RIL up 4%, hits new life-time high on stake buy in Strand Life Sciences

Shares of (RIL) hit a new life-time high of Rs 2,477.70, and are up 4 per cent on the BSE in early morning trades on Monday on the back of positive flow. The company, after market hours, on Friday said its subsidiary had acquired majority stake in genomic testing frim Strand Life Sciences Pvt Ltd for Rs 393 crore.

The acquisition by Reliance Strategic Business Ventures Ltd (RSBVL) is part of Reliance’s digital health intiatives, the firm said in a recent stock exchange filing. “RSBVL, a wholly owned subsidiary of RIL, has acquired 22.8 million equity shares of Rs 10 each of Strand Life Sciences Private Limited for a cash consideration of Rs 393 crore only,” it said.

A further investment of up to Rs 160 crore is expected to be completed by March, 2023. The aforesaid investment is part of group’s digital health initiatives, to foster affordable access to world class technology and innovation led healthcare ecosystem in India. No governmental or regulatory approvals were required for the said investment, the company said.

The stock is quoting higher for the fourth straight trading session. In past two weeks, the stock has rallied 15 per cent from level of Rs 2,162.40 on August 23. On Friday, RIL market price surpassed its previous high of Rs 2,368.80, touched on September 16, 2020.

Further, the stock is likely to be in limelight this week in anticipation of the launch of JioPhone Next smartphone. JioPhone Next will be packed with features like Google Assistant, automatic read-aloud of screen text, language translation, smart camera with augmented reality filters, and more. It will be available in the market from the auspicious date of Ganesh Chaturthi, 10 September – Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director, RIL had said in his address at the company’s AGM held on June 24, 2021. The JioPhone Next will be the most affordable 4G smartphone in India, and world, Ambani had quoted.

Meanwhile, RIL remains constructive on the O2C margin outlook with improving mobility, healthy domestic petchem demand and container shortage. Upstream’s earnings contribution should improve with higher output (MJ first gas by Q3FY23, overall 30mmscmd in CY23) and prices (to be up 50-60 per cent in H2FY22), analysts at Emkay Global Financial Services said in June quarter result update.

The management is seeing signs of retail easing with operating store hours at 38 per cent in June 2021 (25 per cent in May) and further opening-up in July 2021. 700 new stores are in the pipeline for opening. JioFiber now has 3 million customers/access outside 12 million premises. Jio has received 100 MHz in the 3GPP band n78 from DoT for 5G trials. RIL and Microsoft have operationalized an initial 10 MW capacity of Jio-Azure cloud data centers (Jamnagar-Nagpur). Jio’s spectrum investments have created the capacity to on-board the next 200 million customers, the brokerage firm said.

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