Indiabulls plots maiden realty fund

The Mumbai-based asset manager will launch an INR 5 billion real estate fund and has also hired a senior JLL executive to lead its alternative investment fund business.   

Mumbai-based Indiabulls Asset Management is to launch its maiden debt-focussed real estate fund by January 2015.

The firm revealed it is initially targeting to raise INR 5 billion ($80.96 million; €64.73 million) for the fund, the bulk of which will be used to lend to residential developers in the country, following which it will evaluate raising another INR 5 billion.

The fund will be launched through the alternate investment fund (AIF) route. As per the guidelines released by India’s market regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in 2012, all privately pooled investment funds in the country, including real estate funds, infrastructure funds and private equity funds are categorised as an AIF.

The capital will be raised from high-net-worth domestic investors, family offices and non-resident Indians, Akshay Gupta, group executive head, asset management, private equity and private wealth at Indiabulls Group told PERE. The minimum ticket size of investment by each investor will be INR I0 million, in line with the AIF regulations.

The soft marketing for the fund will begin once the company has sought regulatory approval. A target of INR 1.25 billion has been set for the first close, expected to be announced in January next year.

Indiabulls Asset Management’s parent company, Indiabulls Housing Finance has been actively lending to real estate developers but the firm recently launched its own AIF business. Earlier this week, it brought on board Ambar Maheshwari, former managing director of corporate finance at property advisory Jones Lang LaSalle India as the chief executive of the new venture.

On the appointment, Gupta said: “The Alternate Investment Funds will allow the investors to participate in the real estate financing space. Indiabulls Group is well positioned to manage such funds and Ambar will head a high calibre team which will help in achieving the stated objectives of the funds when they are launched.”

While the firm’s initial focus will remain on debt-focused real estate funds, it is also looking at co-investment options, both in debt and equity, with foreign investors.