CHENNAI: The real estate sector in Chennai has been experiencing a downturn for the last four years and job creation is the need of the hour to help the city come out of it, according to experts.
Speaking at the real estate summit awards function organised by the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and The New Indian Express, Ajit Chordia, former president of Confederation of Real Estate Development Authority of India and managing director of Olympia Group, said that Chennai needed to be marketed not only abroad but also in India to generate investments. Stating that developers should look at new avenues like co-living, he said that the need of the hour was to re-engineer oneself to what is available.
WS Habib, President, Credai, Chennai and managing director of Ramky Wavoo Developers, said that the downturn was cyclic and hoped good times would come soon. Hailing CM Edappadi K Palaniswami’s foreign visit to woo investors, he also stressed the need for a real-time Master Plan for Chennai and said Credai was pushing the housing department to come out with a new plan.
Anuj Puri, Chairman, Anarock Group, at the inaugural session, said the real estate sector could be revived in 18 to 24 months and said new players were entering the sector. “The downturn is not cyclical but structural,” he said. However, the biggest issue the real estate sector is facing is availability of liquidity due to the crisis in non-banking financial corporations (NBFC), he said.
Joseph Mathew, executive management team Director, Sales (South India), HDFC Ltd, said the customers were waiting for the projects to complete before investing and as a result, developers lacked liquidity and they can’t depend on NBFCs which were earlier considered as last-mile funding agencies.
Shobit Agarwal, managing director and chief executive officer of Anarock Capital Advisors, who moderated the session ‘Decoding Market Challenges: Unlocking Future Potential,’ highlighted how the entire real estate sector was undergoing changes. The house sizes are shrinking and offices are becoming efficient with sizes shrinking from 100 square feet per person to 70 square feet per person.
Aloke Bhuniya, chief executive officer, Ascendas First Space, during the session ‘Alternative: The Next Big Opportunity in Real Estate,’ said that warehousing was not attracting Indian investors as the returns were moderate.”That is why we are having foreign investors, “ he said.
Jitendra Jagdev, co-founder and chief operating officer of Nestaway Technologies, highlighted how co-working space was catching up in India. He said that currently there were only one lakh beds in co-working space and there was a need for 10 lakh beds.