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India's Tata Group surpasses Ambani brothers as largest firm

Hits to Reliance shares over past year helped Tata climb to number one spot

India's Tata Group has become the country's wealthiest, with a market value higher than the combined wealth of the two Reliance conglomerates, the BBC reports.

While part of the shakeup stems from rising share prices for the almost 30 listed companies of billionaire Ratan Tata's Tata Group, the news channel said, the combined value of the two Reliance groups, led by feuding brothers Mukesh and Anil Ambani, has also declined over the past year.

Currently, the market cap of the Tata Group companies stands at $98.7 billion, which the combined worth of the companies comprising the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group and Reliance Industries Ltd. stands at $81.6 billion, the BBC said.

Apart from disagreements between the two Ambani brothers, the share prices of the Reliance- and Tata-affiliated firms may have traveled in opposite directions in recent months due to the ongoing corruption crisis in the Indian economy. While India's Central Bureau of Investigation has cleared Tata's telecom firm of any wrongdoing in the so-called "2G spectrum scam," Reliance Telecom is still under investigation alleged kickbacks to former telecom minister A. Raja, and some of Reliance Industries' natural gas fields have recently come under scrutiny from the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) .

Reliance ADAG's mobile phone operator, Reliance Communications, and its utility firm, Reliance Infrastructure, were dropped from the bouquet of companies that make up the benchmark Sensex on Monday, resulting in a further drop in share prices, according to the Economic Times.

Shares in Reliance Communications, India's second-largest mobile operator, and Reliance Infrastructure, are the two worst Sensex performers this year - down 34 percent and 31 percent respectively, while the main index has fallen 13 percent, the newspaper said. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/bric-yard/indias-tata-group-surpasses-ambani-brothers-largest-firm