Mumbai-based Reliance made the offering of senior notes through a subsidiary based in Delaware. Reliance’s revenue last year was $58 billion, the highest of any Indian company. Its wide-ranging business activities include energy, textiles, telecommunications, and food. The company will use the proceeds of the issue for capital expenditure, investments, refinancing, and general corporate purposes.
In a statement released Friday, Reliance said the offering, which was available internationally under Rule 144A/Regulation S, was eight times oversubscribed. More than half of the investors were based in the U.S., with a further 31 percent in Asia and 17 percent in Europe, the statement added.
The deal is being viewed by some as an acid test for future debt offerings by Indian corporates. Hong Kong-based Citigroup banker Terence Chia told Bloomberg that the high level of foreign investment in the notes, combined with strong secondary trading, had created positive market sentiment.
Davis Polk London corporate partner Jeffrey O’Brien and tax partner John Paton advised Reliance on U.S. law. The issuer’s Indian counsel was Mumbai partner Shuva Mandal of AZB & Partners. Both firms acted for the issuer in its previous $1.5 billion offering of senior notes on the Singapore Exchange in 2010.
The underwriters–Barclays Bank PLC; Citigroup Global Markets, Inc.; The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. Ltd.; Bank of America Merrill Lynch; and UBS A.G.–turned to Shearman & Sterling Hong Kong partner Kyungwon Lee and the Mumbai office of J. Sagar Associates for U.S. and Indian counsel, respectively. Both firms were also underwriters’ counsel for Reliance’s 2010 notes issue. J. Sagar did not respond to a request for comment.