Mukesh Ambani appoints children to Reliance board, wife steps down

Reliance Industries Ltd. appointed the three children of billionaire Chairman Mukesh Ambani as non-executive directors on its board as the family continues its succession planning.

Ambani’s wife, Nita, also stepped down from the board, “to devote more of her time to the Reliance Foundation charity where she serves as founding chairperson,” the company said in a statement on Monday. Reliance’s shares erased earlier gains and were down 0.2 percent in Mumbai trading.

The board moves are part of Ambani’s wider attempts to give a clear future leadership plan for the oil-to-consumer conglomerate after a messy family power struggle following the death of his father more than a decade ago.

Three years ago Ambani outlined the deepening role of his children, Isha, Akash, and Anant in the business, handing over leadership positions to them at Reliance’s key energy, retail, and digital services businesses.

The trio “have been closely involved with and are leading and managing key businesses,” Reliance said in the statement, adding that the conglomerate will “gain from their insights and infuse new ideas.”

Reliance’s founder, Dhirubhai Ambani, died without a will in 2002, triggering an ugly and very public clash between Mukesh and his younger brother, Anil, who were both involved in the business at that time. The tussle eventually snowballed and their mother was forced to intervene and divvy up the businesses between the two brothers.

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