Milestone to invest Rs 1,000 cr in real estate projects in Mah

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Pune, Jul 18 (UNI) Milestone Capital Advisors, a management Venture Fund House focussing on real estate in Tier II and III cities, has decided to invest up to Rs 1,000 crore in real estate projects in Maharashtra.

Milestone Capital Advisors Managing Director Ved Prakash Arya told mediapersons that since Pune has emerged as a favored destination for the IT/ITES sector, it has led to an explosive growth in the real estate markets, with prices rising by almost 200 per cent in three years.

''We therefore believe that in Maharashtra, Pune presents among the best opportunities for a good return on our investment. We believe Pune is ripe to have low cost (Rs 10-25 lakh) affordable housing integrated township projects,'' Mr Arya said.

He said Rs 300 crore will be invested in commercial projects in Pune and Rs 300 crore will be invested in affordable housing projects (Rs 10 lakh - Rs 25 lakh per unit) in other cities such as Nagpur, Nashik, Pune and suburban towns/districts of Mumbai. In addition, Milestone is also actively considering a few investment proposals from Nashik.

He said the company has earmarked Rs 200 crore for development of Logistics Parks across Maharashtra. Milestone has so far raised over Rs 2,400 crore from the domestic/offshore market. It has the highest deployment ratio in the sector, having so far signed investment deals worth Rs 1,500 crore. The company currently is in the process of raising Rs 1,000 crore for its domestic fund ''Milestone Domestic Scheme II'', he said.

Speaking about Nagpur, Mr Arya said Nagpur is among the most desirable and investment-friendly cities in the country as far as real estate is concerned. This was borne out by the fact that it featured among India's top ten destinations in a recent survey by international management consulting firm Ernst&Young.

''Nagpur has everything it takes to develop into a mini-metro in the near future. It has a developed infrastructure, locational advantages and new mega-projects like MIHAN and associated SEZs.

This is creating a vast and as yet underserved market for affordable housing in Nagpur, and we hope to address this market,'' he said.

Apart from these investments, Milestone will also invest over Rs 200 crore in warehousing in Mumbai.

''The aggressive growth of the retail sector has led to rapid growth in the logistics business. It has also underscored the deficiencies of warehousing. We see this as a huge opportunity, and have aggressive plans to develop this emerging vertical,'' Mr Arya added.

UNI DWN SSS SKB1826

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