Ray­mond sells 20-acre Mum­bai plot to Xan­der arm for 700cr

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Business - Reeba.Zachariah @times­group.com

Mum­bai: The re­tail arm of pri­vate eq­uity firm Xan­der has agreed to buy 20 acres of land in J K Gram, Thane from tex­tile ma­jor Ray­mond Ltd for Rs 700 crore. The buyer, Vir­tu­ous Re­tail, will in­vest an­other Rs 1,700 crore to de­velop the site.

The plot at Ray­mond Junc­tion ad­join­ing the Sing­ha­nia School has a sig­nif­i­cant ad­van­tage in terms of its lo­ca­tion and Xan­der’s plan is to have a com­mer­cial of­fice-cum­re­tail com­plex there. Sid Yog, chair­man, Vir­tu­ous Re­tail, said, “Prime land parcels of this size sel­domly trade, es­pe­cially in ma­jor metropoli­tan mar­kets like Mum­bai. We have been wait­ing pa­tiently for the ideal op­por­tu­nity to ex­pand our port­fo­lio into the Mum­bai re­gion.”

Once the cen­tre is de­vel­oped in Thane, 20 mil­lion-cus­tomer vis­its are ex­pected an­nu­ally. Be­sides, the cen­tre will gen­er­ate 4,000 jobs.

For Ray­mond, the Thane land sale forms part of its as­set mon­eti­sa­tion plans to pare debt. Ray­mond holds the Thane land, which used to house its tex­tile mill, through as­so­ciate com­pany JK In­vesto and the net book value of the plot was about Rs 4 lakh in fis­cal 2018.

Af­ter fac­tor­ing in taxes, J K In­vesto will re­ceive Rs 465 crore from the sale trans­ac­tion. “This deal is a large FDI in terms of real es­tate in Thane...Given the fact that our res­i­den­tial pro­ject, Ray­mond Realty, is un­der­way, the (re­tail pro­ject) devel­op­ment will en­sure a vi­brant real es­tate ecosys­tem within its vicin­ity of­fer­ing home buy­ers a bet­ter choice,” said Gau­tam Sing­ha­nia, CMD, Ray­mond.

The Thane tex­tile mill, the flag­ship fac­tory of Ray­mond, was set up in the pre-in­de­pen­dence era. Nine years ago, the com­pany pulled the shut­ters down on the mill due to mar­ket dy­nam­ics. Af­ter of­fer­ing com­pen­sa­tion to mill em­ploy­ees, Ray­mond re­ceived clear­ances to de­velop the land for mixed-use projects.

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