Therise an­drise of the Black­stone group in In­dia

EXPLAINER Black­stone Group has strength­ened its real es­tate in­vest­ment port­fo­lio in In­dia and is set to cross the $5 bil­lion mark across as­set classes in­clud­ing shop­ping malls and res­i­den­tial prop­er­ties

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Mad­hurima Nandy mad­hurima.n@livemint.com

BEN­GALURU: Pri­vate eq­uity firm Black­stone Group Lp has strength­ened its real es­tate in­vest­ment port­fo­lio in In­dia and is set to cross the $5 bil­lion mark across dif­fer­ent as­set classes in­clud­ing of­fice, shop­ping malls and res­i­den­tial.

Last week, it signed a de­fin­i­tive agree­ment with In­di­a­b­ulls Real Es­tate Ltd to buy a 50% stake in the lat­ter’s prime of­fice as­sets in Mum­bai for around $730 mil­lion.

Once the deal is con­cluded by March-end, Black­stone’s real es­tate arm would have com­mit­ted $5.1 bil­lion across 30 real es­tate in­vest­ments, of which $3.7 bil­lion is in of­fice space span­ning 100 mil­lion sq. ft, con­sol­i­dat­ing its top po­si­tion as the coun­try’s largest of­fice space in­vestor.

In 2018, Black­stone is also set to buy an 80% ma­jor­ity stake in Nitesh Hub, a shop­ping mall in Kore­gaon Park, Pune from real es­tate firm Nitesh Es­tates Ltd for around Rs310 crore.

“Black­stone’s pa­tience in wait­ing for the right in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties, its fo­cus on com­pleted of­fice as­sets and choos­ing the right de­vel­oper part­ners have been its key strengths,” said Ramesh Nair, chief ex­ec­u­tive and coun­try head at prop­erty ad­vi­sory JLL In­dia.

Of the 100 mil­lion sq. ft of of­fice space that Black­stone has in­vested in, around 55 mil­lion sq. ft cov­ers com­pleted of­fice as­sets, 15 mil­lion sq. ft would be un­der con­struc­tion and 30 mil­lion sq. ft is yet to be com­pleted, Nair said.

The New York-based in­vestor opened its real es­tate di­vi­sion in In­dia in 2007 and signed its first trans­ac­tion in 2008, when it bought a mi­nor­ity stake in man­age­ment firm Syn­ergy Prop­erty Devel­op­ment Ser­vices Pvt. Ltd.

It started buy­ing of­fice as­sets only in 2011, when not many in­vestors were in­ter­ested in the

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