Store relocation to Reliance Retail: Amazon has accused future managers of foul play

In a new attack, US e-commerce chief Amazon Future has accused independent retailers of splitting for Reliance Retail and moving to another 835 retailers. These stores – both large-formats such as Big Bazaar and small-formats like Easy Day and Heritage Fresh – were moved by mandatory order and court order, in a letter addressed to two independent directors of Amazon Future Retail (FRL).

“Although the scheme failed, it is now clear that FRL wanted to isolate its retail outlets on behalf of the Mukesh Ambani group by any means. You, as an independent director, have facilitated this deceptive tactic to deceive the Indian public and regulators, “Amazon said in a letter dated May 19, a copy of which was reviewed by the FE.

According to the scheme, Amazon was referring to the 2020 deal when Future Group signed a deal with Reliance Retail, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries (RIL), to sell its retail, logistics and warehousing businesses for `24,713 crore. It was canceled after Future Group failed to secure approval from shareholders and lenders.

“You, as an independent director, have facilitated this deceptive tactic to deceive the Indian public and regulators,” the letter said, accusing the independent directors of “gross failure” in discharging their statutory responsibilities.

Amazon also said it had notified independent managers and had expressed “grave concern” about the effectiveness of the Future Group through various letters, particularly on various irregularities in Bean’s behavior. However, these red flags were “intentionally” ignored.

The e-commerce firm further alleged that FRL, in its meeting with the main lenders on January 1, 2022, “explicitly” acknowledged that অপর 250 million in unpaid rent arrears, and that the amount was “voluntarily” retained. The rent was withheld for about two months due to the cash crunch, with Amazon saying it was responsible for the minutes of FRL’s meeting with lenders.

“Therefore, the alleged transfer due to failure to pay huge arrears of rent for 835 retail stores, as fast as February 26, 2022, is nothing but a fraud and a false statement to the regulators. , Creditors, shareholders and courts, “it added.

Amazon further complained that 835 retail stores had been “allegedly” closed, possibly paving the way for stores run by companies under the MDA Group. The FRL was “consistent, and in constant discussion with the MDA Group,” it added.

“FRL in conjunction with the Mukesh Ambani Group, a listed company’s retail outlet strategy and fraud are a major public concern. Thus, a thorough and independent investigation into the financial transactions of the FRL and the Beanie family is required, “it said, adding that the investigating authorities, regulators and enforcement agencies need to conduct.

The letter was copied to lenders including various departments of SEBI, State Bank of India, Union Bank of India and UCO Bank and former independent directors.

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