Shriram Land raises $3.7 mn from Bennett Property Holdings

Bangalore based real estate developer Shriram Land Development India Pvt Ltd has raised $3.7 million (Rs 25 crore) through non convertible debentures (NCD) from media house Times Group owned Bennett  Property  Holdings Company  Ltd, a top company executive told VCCircle.

“This is purely a financial transaction and there is no ad-for-equity involved,” said Hemanth Vengali, executive director of Shriram Land.

He added that talks are going on for an extended round of funding from Bennett Property Holdings.

This investment is separate from the typical investment transactions by Times Group. Bennett, Coleman & Company Ltd (BCCL), the privately held holding company of the media house that has publications such as The Times of India and The Economic Times, separately operates a unit under Brand Capital. This division picks equity stakes in Indian firms in lieu of advertisement through the group's various print and electronic media brands.

Incorporated in 2010, Bennett Property Holdings is a low key business arm of BCCL. This is the first such known investment by the firm.

Shriram Land's Vengali said the money would be used to repay loans taken by the private developer for some existing projects that include Shriram Malhaar and Shriram Hamsadhwani.

Founded in 2003, Shriram Land Development India Pvt Ltd is part of Chennai based financial services conglomerate Shriram Group, that also owns Shriram City Union Finance Ltd, Shriram Properties Pvt Ltd, Shriram Asset Management Company Limited, Shriram Housing  Finance Ltd and Shriram Capital among others.

Even as the group has two units in property development, Shriram Land deals only with plot development, gated communities and affordable housing units while Shriram Properties deals with residential apartments, SEZ, commercial and retail real estate divisions.

Shriram Land, which is currently operational in Bangalore, has till date developed 2.3 million sqft, according to Vengali.

“We are expanding beyond Bangalore and have zeroed in on Mumbai and Chennai for our next port of calls. We are in the process of due diligence over two plots in Mumbai (2 million square foot each)  for developing two affordable housing projects,” said Vengali.

In 2012, Shriram Land Development raised $6 million from Madison India Real Estate Fund Limited for one of its residential projects. In 2008, Shriram Land had raised $12 million from Samsara Capital to form its land bank in Mysore. Both the investors have since exited from the firm.

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