Friday, July 17, 2009

Commercial realty picks up steam Assetventures

After months of stagnation in the commercial real estate market in Mumbai, there is finally some revival. First off the block was the
10.3-acre Finlay Mill property for which there have been bids from Lodha Developers and Indiabulls Real Estate. On July 31, NTC will put the 16-acre Kohinoor Mill-1 property also on the block, for which the base price will be Rs 1,200 crore. Both these properties are located in central Mumbai.

In the case of Finlay Mill property, the last day for the submission of bids was Thursday. Lodha Developers and Indiabulls Real Estate have put in their bids. The base price for this property, which has a buildable area of 4.20 lakh square feet, is Rs 708 crore with Lodha’s bid at Rs 657.9 crore and Indiabulls’ at Rs 520 crore. The property was put on block twice earlier, and according to senior officials at NTC, the sale will go through this time around. When contacted, NTC Mill CMD K Ramchandran Pillai said: “The asset sale committee would review the bids on July 22, after which a decision will be taken.”

It is now learnt that property consultant Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj has been mandated for the sale of the Kohinoor Mill-1 land. A senior NTC official told ET: “The bidding process will commence in less than two weeks.” This is the first time that this land is being put on the block. The Kohinoor Mill-1 property is different from that of Kohinoor Mill-3, which was bought by Manohar Joshi and Raj Thackeray for Rs 421 crore in 2005.

In all, NTC has the go-ahead to put 25 mills in Mumbai on the block. The last deal struck was for a land parcel in Parel in central Mumbai for Rs 702 crore. Last month, the Hindoostan Mill land in the same area, which was owned by the Thackersey family and later sold to a special purpose vehicle (SPV) company of Ackruti City and DLF, was put on the block, ET had reported on May 14 that C Sivasankaran, the NRI maverick investor, had acquired DLF’s stake of 66% for Rs 310 crore.

The revival in the commercial real estate segment has been a welcome development and has been viewed positively by those tracking the industry.

“Though the Finlay property has received bids below the base price, the price on a per acre basis indicates a recovery,” said a property consultant.

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