Future Retail moves Delhi HC, challenges SIAC ruling

Wednesday 03rd November 2021 06:19 EDT

The Amazon-Future battle over the Reliance Retail deal has yet again reached the Delhi high court, with the Future Group seeking a stay on an interim order passed by the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) on 21 October. According to a regulatory filing, Future Group promoters and Future Coupons Pvt. Ltd have also urged the high court to set aside the SIAC order.

Last week, SIAC dismissed Future Group’s appeal to vacate the interim stay on the Reliance transaction awarded in October 2020. In its appeal, the company contested the observation of the arbitration court, saying that Future Retail was in no way a party to the agreement between Amazon and Future Coupons, as the group promoters had not signed any agreement with Amazon.

Amazon invested £140 million in Future Coupons, which owns nearly 10% stake in Future Retail. In its appeal, Future Retail has also urged the court to allow the company to conduct a meeting of shareholders and creditors, according to an order of the Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT).

On 28 September, the NCLT had allowed the Kishore Biyani-led group companies to hold meetings of shareholders and creditors for approval to sell all its assets to Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd. Last week, Amazon filed an interim application in the Supreme Court to restrain Future Retail from holding the meeting of shareholders and creditors on the Reliance Retail deal.

On 29 August 2020, the debt-laden Future Group announced the sale of its retail and wholesale assets to Reliance Industries Ltd’s subsidiaries for £2.47 billion. Soon after, Amazon approached SIAC on the grounds that its investment agreement with Future Coupons, another Biyani firm, bars Future Retail from selling its assets to Reliance.

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