Who Got Richer And Poorer : Gautam Adani Was Up, While Dish Network’s Chairman Got Downgraded

A Mumbai real estate developer and a high school dropout who flies fighter jets for fun also soared this week.

Fast-growing U.S. labor costs and a dip in the number of Americans filing new unemployment claims presented a rocky week for the markets. But overall the indexes saw a modest increase since last Friday, with the S&P 500 up 1.9% and the tech-centric Nasdaq Composite up 2.6%.

But not everyone fared well this week. Charles Ergen, the billionaire cofounder and chairman of Dish Network, shed $600 million of his fortune since last Friday as shares of his pay TV and wireless firm hit a 14-year low. Early this week Dish Network disclosed that it was hit by a ransomware attack in late February and that unspecified data was stolen.

Shares of Dish Network fell more than 6% on Tuesday after the company stated in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission that “certain data was extracted” in a breach that targeted internal communications and customer support operations. On top of that one influential analyst downgraded the firm on Tuesday, likely pushing shares even lower.

Other billionaires had a much better week. Indian tycoon Mangal Prabhat Lodha’s real estate firm Macrotech Developers reversed course from a 52-week low on Friday Feb. 24 following an analyst upgrade for the Mumbai-based property developer. Shares rose 38% this week. And India’s Gautam Adani–who was the world’s third richest person in mid January–got a boost as U.S.-based investor GQG Partners injected nearly $1.9 billion into four of the Adani Group’s listed companies. The investment followed a difficult month for Adani Group in the wake of a short-seller report released on Jan. 24.

Another billionaire who had a good week: Jared Isaacman, a fighter-jet flying payments entrepreneur, who got 18% richer after his payment processing company Shift4 Payments reported strong 2022 results, lifting shares to a 52-week high.

We tracked the change in fortunes from the market close on Friday, February 24 through the close on Friday, March 3.

Here’s how some of the world’s richest people fared this week.

Charles Ergen

Net Worth: $3.4 bil 🔴 Down $600 mil, -15%

Country: United States | Source Of Wealth: Satellite TV | View profile

The cyber attack that caused a multi-day service outage wasn’t the only thing that affected Dish this week. On Tuesday, Bank of America senior research analyst David Barden issued a rare double-downgrade for Dish, lowering the stock from buy to underperform. For Ergen, who took the pay television provider public in 1996 and in recent quarters has continued to watch Dish lose subscribers, the bad news represents a dentin his fortune. Dish shares price closed down 15% this week.

Dish has been trying for years to build a 5G wireless network to cover at least 70% of the U.S. by June of this year following the 2020 merger of its competitors Sprint and T-Mobile. Barden, along with other analysts, noted future opportunities in 5G might be scarce for Dish due to competition and technological challenges in the past year.

Mangal Prabhat Lodha

Net Worth: $4.9 bil 🟢 Up $1.5 bil, +44%

Country: India | Source Of Wealth: Real estate | View profile

Property magnate Lodha of India saw a massive 44% increase in his fortune this week after his Mumbai-based real estate firm Macrotech Developers was upgraded by Motilal Oswald Research, which noted an increase in the number of housing units registered in Mumbai in February and predicted that India’s per capita income will grow in the next decade. Lodha founded his property development firm in 1980 and took it public in 2021. He started out building homes for the middle class in Mumbai suburbs and later built Trump Tower Mumbai, a 75-story luxury apartment skyscraper. He and his family members own about 85% of the company’s shares.

Gautam Adani

Net Worth: $42.7 bil 🟢 Up $7.4 bil, +21%

Country: India | Source Of Wealth: Adani Group | View profile

GQG Partners, a U.S.-based firm with $92 billion in assets under management, put a total of $1.87 billion into four listed Adani Group companies, the group announced Thursday. The move boosted confidence in the group’s ability to bring in outside funding more than a month after short seller Hindenburg Research alleged the group of stock manipulation and accounting fraud. Adani Group has denied all such allegations.

Shares of Adani Enterprises, the group’s flagship company, rose a notable 43% this week, a climb that started several days before the GQG injection was disclosed. Adani Enterprises shares rose nearly 17% on Friday after GQG’s $660 million investment in the principal namesake was announced on Thursday after Indian markets closed. Shares of Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone jumped 10% after GQG dropped $640 million on the firm; shares of Adani Ports hit a high mark since the Hindenburg report was released in late January.

Jared Isaacman

Net Worth: $2.2 bil 🟢 Up $400 mil, +18%

Country: United States | Source Of Wealth: Payment processing | View profile

Last year was a good one for Isaacman, the founder and CEO of payment processing firm Shift4 Payments. The company, which reported 2022 results on Tuesday, beat analysts’ earnings per share estimates and reported nearly $2 billion in 2022 revenue, a 46% increase over 2021, leading to a strong spike in the share price Tuesday that continued, lifting shares by 25% for the week.

“The success Shift4 enjoys today is the result of our early entry into the world of integrated payments,” Isaacman said in a letter to shareholders. “We are taking an aggressive position with respect to controlling costs in an uncertain environment and are committed to maintaining flat as possible headcount from 2022 exit levels.”


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Adani Enterprises’ Failed Share Offering Exposes More Investment Funds With Questionable Ties To The Adani Group

Three investment funds that purchased shares in Adani Enterprises’ scuttled $2.5 billion offering have ties to the Adani Group and suspected Adani proxies, according to a Forbes analysis

Three investment funds with ties to the Adani Group committed to buying up shares as investors in Adani Enterprises follow-on stock offering, which was abruptly canceled Wednesday following a drop in Adani Enterprises’ share price in the wake of U.S. short seller Hindenburg Research’s 100-page report.

Two Mauritius-based funds, Ayushmat Ltd and Elm Park Fund, and India-based Aviator Global Investment Fund, together agreed to buy 9.24% of all shares available to anchor investors, the institutional investors who are allotted shares a day before the public offering. That percentage represented an investment of just $66 million, but is likely more evidence of Adani getting help from affiliated parties.

The three funds’ ties to Adani have not previously been reported, and follow Forbes’ report Wednesday that two of Adani Enterprises’ book-runners, Elara Capital and Monarch Networth Capital, were alleged to be Adani affiliates by Hindenburg.

The Adani Group’s seven publicly listed companies have lost over $100 billion of market value in the ten days since Hindenburg accused it of a decades-long scheme of fraudulent self enrichment. The group issued a lengthy denial and reply to Hindenburg’s report and has threatened legal action against the investment firm. The Adani Group did not respond to Forbes’ request for comment for this article.

Demand for Adani Enterprises’ $2.5 billion stock offering slumped after the short seller’s report. Despite Abu Dhabi’s last-minute injection of $400 million, the Adani Group called off the sale and said it will return funds to investors, with Gautam Adani himself citing in a video the “volatility of the market” and adding that it would not have been “morally correct” to go ahead under the circumstances. (He did not address the Hindenburg allegations.) Adani Enterprises stock has fallen more than 50% since January 24, the day before the Hindenburg report was published.

One of Adani Enterprises’ would-be anchor investors was Ayushmat Ltd, a Mauritius-based fund that had pledged to buy 2.32% of the shares offered early to the institutional investors. Ayushmat is administered by Rogers Capital, a financial services firm in Mauritius. One of Rogers’ directors and key shareholders is Jayechund Jingree, who was formerly a director of the Mauritius-headquartered Adani Global Ltd., a subsidiary of Adani Enterprises.

Jingree also has ties to Vinod Adani, Gautam’s brother and a key player in the Adani Group’s web of offshore companies. As described by Hindenburg, Jingree’s longtime U.K. brokerage, Orbit Investment Securities, was formerly named Jermyn Capital and controlled by Dharmesh Doshi, a former Indian fugitive in connection to a stock rigging scam in 2001, for which his partner, Ketan Parekh, was convicted. Doshi and Jermyn Capital were alleged to have participated in another stock rigging scam involving Indian drugmaker Sun Pharmaceuticals between 2007 and 2009 (Sun’s founder, Dilip Shanghvi, is one of India’s richest, worth $16 billion). That scheme also allegedly involved Jineshwar Holdings, a Mauritius company later revealed by offshore data leaks to be controlled by Vinod Adani.

Vikram Rege, a director at Ayushmat Ltd., said in an emailed statement to Forbes, “Ayushmat Ltd. does not manage any funds on behalf of any Adani Group principals.” Jingree did not respond to a request for comment.

Rege is also a director at Elm Park Fund, which had planned to be the second largest investor (5.67%) in Adani Enterprises’ anchor offering. Elm Park Fund, a Mauritius-based fund, was also alleged to have engaged in the Sun Pharma stock rigging scheme, according to a whistleblower complaint obtained by Moneylife India in 2018. Elm Park Fund was one of a “host of foreign entities involved in questionable transactions in the Indian equity market” as part of the scheme, according to Moneylife India. Forbes could not locate the full complaint; the Securities and Exchange Board of India previously declined to share it.

Rege did not address Forbes’ questions about Elm Park Fund, and the fund did not respond to Forbes’ requests for comment as of press time.

Lastly, Aviator Global Investment Fund subscribed to 1.25% of Adani Enterprises’ anchor shares. The Aviator Global Investment Fund’s senior management official, per 2021 Indian parliamentary records, is Antonino Sardegno. According to Sardegno’s LinkedIn profile (which disappeared within hours after Forbes reached out to him for comment), he led “investment solutions” from 2008 to 2013 for Monterosa Group. In its report, Hindenburg alleged that Monterosa Group and five of its investment funds, holding $4.5 billion of Adani company stock (as of January 24), was Adani’s largest “stock parking entity,” meaning, a third-party fund designed to conceal ownership.

More recently, Sardegno was CEO of Andetta Private Services from 2013 until August 2022. Andetta, which Hindenburg identified as a subsidiary of offshore firm Amicorp, is the controlling shareholder of New Leaina Investments, a Cyprus fund that previously owned over 1% of Adani Green Energy, Adani’s renewable energy company, and smaller stakes in other Adani companies, according to Hindenburg’s research and the Adani Group’s financial disclosures of foreign investors. Hindenburg alleges that Amicorp “formed at least 7 Adani promoter entities, at least 17 offshore shells and entities associated with Vinod Adani, and at least 3 Mauritius-based offshore shareholders of Adani stock.” Sardegno, Andetta Private Services and Amicorp have not responded to Forbes’ requests for comment as of press time.

If Adani Group principals are the ultimate beneficial owners of these various funds, that would mean the Adani Group is also a large stakeholder in one of the Adani Group’s rivals: the Hinduja Group, the $70 billion (annual sales) Indian conglomerate controlled by the four Hinduja brothers. The Aviator Global Investment Fund, New Leaina Investments and three other funds with ties to Adani Group – Elara India Opportunities Fund, Connecor Investment Enterprise Ltd and LGOF Global Opportunities Limited – all hold sizeable stakes in Hinduja Global Solutions, Hinduja Leyland Finance and Hinduja’s Gulf Oil Corp Limited. The Hinduja Group had not responded to a request for comment as of press time.

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