Entertainment · June 20, 2022

Reliance: India fines Reliance for failing to promptly disclose the 2020 Facebook deal

India’s market regulator on Monday fined two of its compliance officers for violating fair disclosure norms during Facebook’s $5.7 billion investment in its digital unit in 2020.

In April 2020, Facebook invested $5.7 billion in Reliance’s Jio platforms from Meta with the goal of enabling WhatsApp to offer payment services to millions of small businesses. The deal helped billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance reduce its heavy debt burden.

This was announced by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

did not announce the deal even after March 2020 newspaper reports published price-sensitive details about the upcoming investment, which caused its shares to rise.

Reliance did not immediately respond to requests for comment outside of regular business hours.

“As the pieces of (unreleased price-sensitive information) then became selectively available, the company waived its responsibility to review and clean up the unconfirmed information that was floating around,” SEBI said in its order late Monday.

SEBI said it was “mandatory” for Reliance to “provide adequate disclosure itself” once it became aware of the “selective availability” of the information.

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The regulator fined Reliance and the two compliance officers Rs 3 million ($38,522).

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