RIL is in advanced talk to acquire Just Dial. According to industry sources, Ambani’s telecom to petrochemicals giant is in advanced talks to acquire Just Dial (JD) from its pioneer members for $800-$900 million. Once the deal is completed, it will allow Reliance Retail to use the 25-year-old informational searches and listings company’s merchant database, along with its pan-India network, to speed its own local retail and payments play.

Key Points

  • An announcement is anticipated after Justdial’s board of directors meets on July 16 to discuss fundraising proposals.
  • Analysts believe Mukesh Ambani’s RIL is planning a tactical move that, if realized, will allow Reliance Retail to explore Justdial’s merchant database.
  • VSS Mani and his family, the firm’s promoters, possess 35.5 percent of the business entity.
  • RIL will also make a major investment in the publicly-traded company as part of the agreement.

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Just Dial has scheduled a boardroom meeting

On Friday, July 16, Just Dial has scheduled a boardroom meeting to “review” fund-raising plans. Today is the day for an official statement. While the Future Group takeover remains in legal turmoil with Amazon, Mukesh Ambani, Asia’s richest man, is shifting on to his latest tactical goal.

With an average of 150 million distinctive visitors per quarter, Just Dial is the industry leader in the local search engine category. And operating on various platforms like Mobile, Apps, Websites, and with a hotline number 8888888888.

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RIL is exploring owning a portion of VSS Mani owned Just Dial

VSS Mani and his family, the business’s founders, own 35.5 percent of the company, which is currently assessed at Rs 2,787.9 crore.

RIL is exploring owning a portion of Mani’s company and will unveil an open proposal for a further 26% of the company’s shares, worth Rs 4,035 crore at the present stages. Furthermore, if the open proposal is fully signed RIL will receive more than 60% ownership in Justdial from Mani, and the founder of the company will keep to run the operations as an associate partner and reap from future growth.

RIL will, however, make a substantial investment in the publicly held company as part of the deal.

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Just Dial’s stock has risen in anticipation of merger

Justdial’s stock has risen 52.4 percent in the last six months, reaching a peak level of Rs 1,138 before closing at Rs 1,080.15 on Wednesday. Trade observers say the stock’s price has risen in anticipation of a merger.

The digital database company became public in 2013, and it faces stiff competition from Google and Facebook, both of which are rooted in the United States.

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Dialogue between Reliance & Justdial Expedited

A dialogue between Reliance and Justdial has been ongoing since April, but it has picked up speed since previously this year when sale deliberations with Tata Digital fell down. The deal’s consultants are Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas and Co, Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, and Goldman Sachs.

In March, the cars-to-coffee listing giant held initial talks with Justdial in a sincere effort to acquire a stake in the internet search engine to strengthen Tata’s e-commerce footprint and its soon-to-be-released Super App.

Last-minute snags, particularly surrounding stock market volatility, may disrupt timeframes, according to the financial sources.

“Aside from its network and dedicated client base, a major element is JD’s fairly moderate estimations that can be capitalized upon.”