Indian retail-to-energy group Reliance Industries Ltd reported a record $1-billion net profit for the financial first-

quarter, fuelled by a strong petrochemicals performance. Reliance, controlled by the country’s wealthiest man Mukesh Ambani, announced net profit for the three months to June climbed by a better-than-expected 13.7% to 59.57 billion rupees ($1 billion) in the same period a year ago. The group, which owns a supermarket chain and a telecommunications company but derives most of its earnings from its massive energy operations, has “delivered a record level of consolidated net profit this quarter,” Ambani said. The company “has a great pipeline of new projects” that will keep Reliance ahead of rivals, Ambani said in a statement. The performance beat analysts’ expectations that the company, which runs the world’s biggest refinery complex, would post a net profit of around 54 billion rupees during the first quarter of the 2014-15 financial year. “The petrochemicals business performance highlights the strength of our portfolio-mix,” Ambani said. “Alongside, this robust financial performance, we also made significant progress on our growth commitments,” he said.