SAFAKNA TURKEY – Gautam Adani, Asia’s richest man, lost $68 billion in 72 hours after being accused by U.S. research firm Hindenburg Research of committing “the biggest fraud in corporate history.”
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Hindenburg Research’s report on India’s second-largest conglomerate accuses Adani of stock price manipulation and fraud when the group launched a share offering to raise exactly $2.5 billion. According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, 60-year-old Adani’s net worth has fallen by more than $30 billion to $84 billion. Thus, Adani slipped from the third richest person in the world to 11th place.
WHY DID ADANI GROUP LOST $68 BILLION?
Bloomberg estimates that Adani Group companies have lost almost $68 billion since Hindenburg Research’s report last week. An American research firm announced that it had spent two years researching the Adani group and concluded that seven companies listed on the Adani stock exchange were overvalued with an “85 percent downside risk.” The main allegations against the holding include share price manipulation and accounting fraud, among other misconduct. The report also alleges that the Adani Group is using offshore shell companies associated with the Adani family to drive up the price of its shares.
On the other hand, Nathan Anderson-led Hindenburg Research came to the fore in 2020 when it accused EV maker Nikola of lying about its technology. The founder of Nikola was convicted of fraud last year.
Adani’s group, on the other hand, refuted Hindenburg Research’s claims and published a 413-page report. Adani’s response included documents and datasheets, and she said the group disclosed all necessary regulatory documents and complied with local laws.
In response, Hindenburg Research stated that Adani answered only 26 of the 88 questions asked of the businessman in the report and was unable to resolve most of the issues raised in it.
Finally, the Hindenburg Research report prompted investors to sell Adani Group shares. Since January 25, Adani’s flagship company Adani Enterprises and others in the group have experienced a drop of up to 20 percent in one day.
Some analysts say that if the questions raised by Hindenburg Research turn out to be true, it could hurt the financial institutions and banks the group borrows from.
WHO IS GAUTAM ADANI?
Adani was born into a middle-class family in Ahmedabad, Gujarat in western India. He dropped out of college to become a diamond dealer in Mumbai, India’s financial capital. Adani began importing plastics in the 1980s before founding Adani Enterprises, which sells everything from shoes to buckets and remains its flagship company.
With the Indian economy booming, Adani turned to infrastructure and the coal sector. Mundra Port in Gujarat, Adani’s first major project, opened in 1998 and is currently India’s largest port. Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd. operates as India’s largest private port operator.
However, over the past 10 years, Adani has become the largest coal mine operator in India. Adani’s companies operate airports in major cities, build roads, generate electricity, manufacture defense equipment, develop agricultural drones, sell vegetable oil, and manage the media. Despite his focus on fossil fuels, billionaire Adani also aims to be the world’s biggest player in renewable energy by 2030.
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