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How Asia's Richest Gautam Adani Group Lost $60 Bln in Less Than a Week

© AP Photo / Rajesh Kumar SinghIndustrialist Gautam Adani, center, sits for a group photograph during the Ground Breaking Ceremony @3.0 of the UP Investors Summit Lucknow in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, India, Friday, June 3, 2022.
Industrialist Gautam Adani, center, sits for a group photograph during the Ground Breaking Ceremony @3.0 of the UP Investors Summit Lucknow in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, India, Friday, June 3, 2022. - Sputnik India, 1920, 30.01.2023
Asia's wealthiest man has lost nearly $27 billion this year alone. On January 23, Adani ranked number three among the world's richest people, but later slipped to the eighth place (at the moment this article was published).
In less than a week, Indian billionaire Gautam Adani abruptly found himself in the middle of controversy, in which the US-based short-seller Hindenburg Research claimed that his entire empire is built on fraud (they put it as being on a "precarious financial footing").
60-year-old Adani is a college dropout whose conglomerate owns many of India's airports, the nation's largest private-sector port, and Indian news channel New Delhi Television (NDTV), among other holdings.
According to Bloomberg, his wealth rose from $5 billion in 2014 to $121 billion in December 2022 — during this time, his group also got many government infrastructure and other contracts.

What Does Hindenburg Allege About Adani?

On January 24, Hindenburg released a 106-page report titled Adani Group: How The World's 3rd Richest Man Is Pulling The Largest Con In Corporate History.
The report pointed out that Adani's net worth has risen by more than $100 billion (Rs 8100 billion) over the last three years, largely due to the share prices of seven of his listed companies rising by an average of 819% during this period.
The firm alleged that the said stock valuations of seven listed companies of the group are "85%+ overvalued," adding, "even if you ignore our investigation and take the companies' financials at face value."
The report alleges that Adani Group has indulged in "brazen stock manipulation and accounting fraud scheme over decades".
The research firm has also included the name of Adani's brothers, his brother-in-laws said that his family built "a vast labyrinth of offshore shell entities" in countries such as Cyprus, Mauritius and the UAE — all of which are tax havens.
Hindenburg Research LLC, on its website, said that it "specializes in forensic financial research."

Adani Losses

Multiple media outlets indicate that the group has lost over $60 billion in market value since the report's release.
Shares of Adani Transmission, Adani Total Gas and Adani Green Energy, Adani Wilmar, Adani Ports, and the group's most recent acquisitions — ACC, Ambuja Cement and media house NDTV — fell by up to 20 percent last week and also on Monday.

As per Forbes' real-time billionaires index, Adani is now worth $92.6 billion, having lost about 19 percent of his fortune, making him slip from third richest man to eighth richest man.

The media outlet said that Adani Group is considering legal action against New York's Hindenburg Research.
The billionaire, in a statement, said it had always been "in compliance with all laws" and rejected the report, adding that it was "a malicious combination of selective misinformation and stale, baseless and discredited allegations".
In response, Hindenburg maintained it would stand by its record and welcome legal action, as any claim against Hindenburg would be "meritless".

Adani Group Rubbishes Allegations

On Sunday night, the Adani group shared 413 pages rebuttal against the charges made by Hindenburg, "All transactions entered into by us with entities who qualify as 'related parties' under Indian laws and accounting standards have been duly disclosed by us."
"This is rife with conflict of interest and intended only to create a false market in securities to enable Hindenburg, an admitted short seller, to book massive financial gain through wrongful means at the cost of countless investors," Adani group added.
Hindenburg replied, "predictably tried to lead the focus away from substantive issues and instead stoked a nationalist narrative".
"We disagree. To be clear, we believe India is a vibrant democracy and an emerging superpower with an exciting future. However, we also believe India's future is being held back by the Adani Group, which has draped itself in the Indian flag while systematically looting the nation," the firm stated.
On Monday (closure of India's share market), shares of flagship Adani Enterprises rebounded and rose about 9.5%, but the share of other companies in the Adani Group continued to plunge.