MUMBAI: ASK Group‘s realty-focused private equity arm on Wednesday announced an investment of Rs 200 crore in a mid-income housing project promoted by developer Kalpataru Group. The company, however, did not disclose the quantum of the stake in the project.

ASK Property Investment Advisors (ASK PIA) has invested in the project in Pune‘s Baner locality spread on a 16 acre land parcel which will have 1,200 residential units with a saleable area of approximately 1.9 million square feet, an official statement said.

The ASK statement said Baner is a centrally located residential neighbourhood with established social and physical infrastructure located close to the Mumbai-Bengaluru national highway. It has also grown as an IT employment hub with 13 million sq ft of IT parks/office complexes.

“This is our 14th project in Pune, and with this investment the ASK group has now invested in projects spanning across 12 million sq ft including over 8,500 residential units, a city-centric office space and IT-SEZ in Pune,” ASK PIA’s managing director and chief executive Amit Bhagat said.

This is the vehicle’s maiden bet on a project promoted by Kalpataru and Bhagat pointed to strong brand reputation, in-house quality construction capabilities, and timely project delivery track record as pull factors.

“The last couple of years have witnessed a consolidation of demand for homes to reputed, execution-focussed and large-scale developers. Affordable and mid-income housing has seen a substantial recovery and prices have bottomed out in the last one year which has also led to sustainable demand,” ASK Group’s chief executive and managing director Sunil Rohokale said.

He said that the home loan interest rates being at a decadal low, concessions in stamp duty or premiums, and flexibility by developers have increased the affordability for house purchase.

Therefore, all the affordable or middle income nearing completion projects located in growth corridors and having achieved financial closure would see a significant advantage, he added.

SK PIA has raised around Rs 5,000 crore since 2009 and investors include family offices, ultra high net worth individuals (UHNI), high net worth individual (HNI) and institutions, the statement said.

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