Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) is within stone’s throw of the Rs. 10 lakh crore market capitalisation milestone — hovering at Rs. 9.92 lakh crore – after its wholly owned subsidiary Reliance Jio announced plans to hike the mobile phone call and data charges. This tariff hike announcement comes on the heels of similar declarations by rivals, Airtel and Vodafone Idea, in the past two days. Reliance Jio has disrupted the telecom industry since its launch three years ago by offering mobile telephony and data services at dirt cheap prices, and this would be its first significant tariff hike since its inception. Reliance Industries surged as much as 4.1 per cent to Rs. 1,571, its all-time high level.
Reliance Jio said that telecom regulator TRAI is likely to initiate the consultation process for revision in telecom tariffs. The telecom giant further added that it would carry out an “appropriate” increase in tariffs which “does not adversely impact data consumption or growth in digital adoption and sustains investments”.
Reliance Industries had hit the Rs. 9 lakh crore market-cap milestone as recently as October. TCS, the second most valued company on the bourse comes a distant second with a market cap of about Rs. 8 lakh crore. The share prices of index bellwether Reliance Industries have been on a tear this year after Mukesh Ambani made public his intentions in August to cut the company’s net debt to zero in 18 months by selling stake in its oil-to-chemicals business to Saudi Aramco.