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Amazon moves Supreme Court challenging Delhi HC order on Future-RIL deal

Amazon moves Supreme Court for stay on Delhi High Court order


Amazon moves Supreme Court challenging Delhi HC order on Future-RIL deal

E-commerce giant Amazon has moved the Supreme Court, challenging the Delhi High Court division bench’s March 22 order that quashed the stay given by a single-judge bench on the Rs 24,713-crore deal Future Retail-Reliance Retail deal. The Jeff Bezos-led group sought a stay on the March 22 order of the division bench, terming it “illegal”, “random”, “inequitable and unfair”.

On March 22, a division bench of the Delhi High Court allowed Kishore Biyani-promoted Future Group to proceed with its ₹24,713 crore asset sale deal with Reliance Industries Ltd and stayed the March 18 single-judge order that restrained it from taking any steps towards asset sale.

Amazon submitted that the single judge had passed a well-reasoned order spanning over 130 pages and the division bench passed the interim order in a mechanical manner staying its operation on the same reasons. Therefore, the petitioner (Amazon) approached this Court by filing SLP(special leave petition) , it added. According to the plea filed by Amazon, the division bench has committed a grave error in passing an order in a non-maintainable appeal, permitting Future Group to commit further breaches of the EA (Emergency Arbitration) order.

Earlier, Amazon had moved the Supreme Court after the single judge had passed an interim order on February 2, 2021 staying the deal and the division bench had on February 8, 2021 stayed the operation of the order over the plea filed by FRL. The Supreme Court had then issued notice over Amazon’s plea giving the go-ahead to the proceedings before the Mumbai Bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) over the scheme of arrangement between Future and Reliance, but these entities were not to pass any order sanctioning the deal. The plea is listed on April 27 for hearing.

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Future Retail moves Delhi High Court to challenge single judge’s order

The Future-Reliance deal, which is contested by the global e-commerce major Amazon, has already received clearance from CCI, SEBI and bourses, and the scheme of arrangement is now awaiting the nod from NCLT and shareholders. The scheme of arrangement entails the consolidation of Future Group’s retail and wholesale assets into one entity Future Enterprises Ltd and then transferring it to Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd (RRVL) in the Rs 24,713 crore deal that was announced in August last year.

Meanwhile, the timeline for the deal to be completed has been extended by six months to September 30, 2021 by Reliance Retail. Amazon and Future have been locked in a bitter legal tussle after the US e-commerce giant dragged Future Group to arbitration at SIAC in October last year, arguing that the latter had violated their contract by entering into the deal with rival Reliance.

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