Adani is no longer Asia’s richest person and loses $50 billion as shares plummet

  • Gautam Adani is no longer Asia’s richest person after falling to 15th on the Forbes billionaires list.
  • The Indian industrialist has lost over $50 billion as Adani Group shares continue a week-long selloff.
  • A short seller claimed Adani’s conglomerate was involved in fraud and market manipulation.

Indian industrialist Gautam Adani is no longer Asia’s richest person as his conglomerate’s stocks have spiraled into flight following a bombshell report from short seller Hindenburg Research.

He now has an estimated net worth of $74.7 billion and is the 15th richest person in the world on Forbes’ billionaires list, which updates the value of the richest people’s public holdings in real time when their stock markets are open. He was overtaken by Mukesh Ambani, the chairman of Reliance Industries, which is valued at $83.7 billion and ranked 9th on the list.

At the beginning of last week, Adani was number 3 on the Forbes list before Hindenburg accused the conglomerate of having “committed the biggest scam in the company’s history” with share manipulation and balance sheet fraud. The group has dismissed the report as “misinformation and outdated, unfounded and discredited allegations”.

The founder and chairman of the Adani Group has seen his fortune dwindle by $50 billion in the wake of the short seller report as shares in his business empire tumbled further on Wednesday, just a day after he managed to raise enough funds to start $2.5 billion stock sale of its flagship company, Adani Enterprises.

While some took India’s biggest follow-up share offering as a sign that investors were hanging on to the conglomerate despite the damning Hindenburg report, shares of Adani Enterprises fell nearly 30% on Wednesday. All six of the flagship company’s other publicly traded companies — with businesses in power, ports, transmission, gas, green energy and food — also reported declines.

“Yesterday there was a slight bounce after the stock sale was implemented after it seemed unlikely at one point, but now the soft market sentiment following the bombastic Hindenburg report has resurfaced,” Ambareesh Baliga, a Mumbai-based independent market analyst, told Reuters .

“The fact that stocks have fallen despite Adani’s rebuttal clearly shows that investor sentiment has been damaged. It will take a while to stabilize,” Baliga said.

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