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Reliance Industries taps Sanjiv Singh to lead Oil to Chemicals unit

Reliance Industries taps Sanjiv Singh to lead Oil to Chemicals unit
Image courtesy of IOCL

India’s Reliance Industries Ltd., which operates Jamnagar refinery, the largest and most complex refinery in the world, has appointed Sanjiv Singh, as group president and member of its Oil to Chemicals (O2C) division business leadership team. 

Singh, who was previously director (Refineries) was appointed chairman of Indian Oil Corp. in June 2017.  He retired from Indian Oil Corporation in June 2020. A chemical engineer from IIT-Roorkee, with a Diploma in Management, Singh joined Indian Oil Corp. in 1981, spearheading refinery operations as well as mega greenfield and brownfield projects in refining and petrochemicals. With extensive experience in the refining sector, Singh played a key role in the setting up, commissioning and stabilisation of two of Indian Oil Corp.’s largest greenfield refineries in Panipat and Paradip.

There is a cooling off period of six months before director-level officials of a public sector undertaking (PSU) can join a private company with which the PSU has a business relationship. Reliance Industries and Indian Oil Corp. are not involved in any joint venture business, however.

“Sanjiv will lead and drive the Group Manufacturing Services (GMS) organisation which is the backbone of our Oil to Chemicals (O2C) business,” Hital Meswani, executive director, Reliance Industries, said in an internal note to welcome Singh. 

“As a member of the O2C leadership, we look forward to his contribution in driving manufacturing excellence and transition towards making Reliance O2C a global leader in energy and materials,” Meswani wrote in the internal memo.

Singh will work closely with Meswani and the O2C leadership team to assume responsibility for Group Manufacturing Services over the next three to months.

Reliance Industries plans to spin off its Oil to Chemicals business into a separate unit. As per the Scheme of Arrangement approved by the company’s board, Reliance Industries will transfer its Oil to Chemicals business to Reliance O2C Ltd. for a lump-sum consideration equal to the income tax net worth of the Oil to Chemicals business.

“We will approach the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) with our proposal to spin off our O2C business into a separate subsidiary. We expect to complete this process by early 2021,” according to Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani.

In August 2019, Saudi Aramco and Reliance Industries signed a non-binding Letter of Intent (LOI) regarding a proposed investment in Reliance O2C. Saudi Aramco’s potential 20% stake is based upon an Enterprise Value of USD75 billion for the O2C division. This would be one of the largest foreign investments ever to be made in India.

Under the non-binding LOI, the proposed investment is subject to due diligence, and the executed definitive agreement will be subject to regulatory and other customary approvals.