Berggruen Holdings Forays Into Indian Realty Space

Private investment company Berggruen Holdings (BH) has forayed into the realty space in India, lining up a slew of commercial and residential projects. It plans to take advantage of the sluggish market scenario to make investments.

Berggruen Holdings founder Nicolas Berggruen said, “The real estate market is going to be difficult for a couple of years. It will be bad because the projects will be slower. But it will be a better opportunity for people willing to invest. But the valuations are more reasonable now”.

Also, the investments are not constrained in terms of sector or asset classes, because BH is not answerable to investors. It manages and invests its own proprietary capital, which exceeds $1 billion.

The firm has pumped in $30 million so far and will add another $20 million to this. Its first project in the realty space, a Rs 350-crore commercial project in Hyderabad, will kick off at the end of the year. The other locations for the realty space include Nagpur, Coimbatore, Mysore, Raipur and Vizag.

Mr Berggruen said, “We have a group of people who can execute property development from A to Z. They will acquire land, develop capability, deliver projects in housing and retail formats. Quality and aesthetics will be a major component”.

In India, the firm’s been active for the past two years and invests across asset classes — private equity, real estate and public markets. The firm has invested $100 million in the country so far. In terms of sectors, it’s spread across hospitality, education, car rentals, warehouse & logistics, equipment rental and real estate. Berggruen typically invests $10 million to $100 million in any single transaction.

Mr Berggruen added, “India has the advantage of being vast and presents dynamic opportunities. We decided to start business from zero, instead of buying into existing ones”. Retail and energy are the other sectors that the firm is looking at in India.

One Comment

  1. Posted August 11, 2008 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    India is beginning to make news worldwide. It’s just the right time to think India. There’s a new sense of confidence in Indian business. This confidence arises from the growing success of Indian enterprise in the face of competition in an increasing number of sectors. The India growth story is going stronger than ever. Favourable demographic and psychographic changes relating to India’s consumer class, international exposure, availability of quality retail space, wider availability of products and brand communication are some of the factors that are driving the retail in India. Real estate consultancy Jones Lang Lasalle Meghraj has identified 50 Indian cities that are likely to witness most of the retail action over the next couple of years — both in terms of development of malls and advent of organised retailers. And Jaipur, Lucknow and Kochi find mention among cities poised for “high growth.For more view-

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