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Key players in the RIL war

June 18, 2005 17:43 IST

The seven-month corporate war at the Rs 99,000 crore (Rs 990 billion) Reliance Industry saw many doyens of the conglomerate switching loyalties to either Mukesh or Anil Ambani with their low profile mother Kokilaben playing the mediator along with family friend ICICI Chairman K V Kamath.

Following is the thumbnail sketch of the main players involved in one of the world's biggest corporate battles for supremacy culminating in an amicable settlement today.

Kokilaben Ambani

After long-drawn patient mediation, the widow of Dhirubhai Ambani could finally work out the truce between her two warring sons. Kokilaben's involvement in the group has been limited but was forced to take the centre stage after her husband's empire began to tremble due to confrontation between the two brothers. Both Mukesh and Anil Ambani respected their parents, which also helped Kokilaben to seal the settlement deal.

Mukesh Ambani

He opened the can of worms with his candid admission in a TV interview on the famous "ownership issue" matter. The 48-year old chemical engineer who studied business at California's Stanford University, joined Reliance in 1981. He is known as the boardroom boy, drawing strategies and business expansion plans of the Reliance group. Reliance Infocomm is his brainchild, though it has now been handed over to his younger sibling Anil.

Anil Ambani

The 46-year old younger brother was always considered the public face of the Reliance group. A science graduate and an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, US, is credited with having pioneered the country's forays into the overseas capital market. He has been conferred various awards including "The Entrepreneur of the Decade Award" by the Bombay Management Association in October, 2002.

V Balasubramaniam
Also known as Balu, played a significant role during the days of the build-up of the Reliance Empire. He served as president of Reliance Industries.  He chose the Mukesh Ambani Camp.

Tony Jesudasan
Considered the right hand of Anil Ambani, he was actively involved in the settlement issue representing the younger sibling's interests.

Amitabh Jhunjhunwala
Another Anil Ambani man, he is a financial expert with more than 23 years of experience in finance and capital markets. He is on the boards of Reliance Capital and associated with some other Reliance companies.

Satish Seth
Opted for the Anil Ambani camp. He played a major role in strategising and overseeing businesses in petrochemicals, petroleum, telecommunication and power sector in the Reliance Empire.

Nikhil Meswani
A cousin of the Ambani brothers, was a confidant of Mukesh, and was an executive director on the board of Reliance Industries.

Hital Meswani

Brother of Nikhil, he also has the confidence of Mukesh Ambani.

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