Morgan Stanley Real Estate Investing has bought a majority stake in KSH Infra Pvt. Ltd, a Pune-based warehousing and industrial logistics park developer, investment banker Avendus Capital said in a statement on Thursday.
The bet marks the return of Morgan Stanley to the real estate sector. It had been an investor in India’s residential real estate market for a long time before discontinuing its exposure to the segment a few years ago.
Avendus Capital, which didn't disclose the amount of stakeholding involved in the deal, acted as the financial adviser to KSH Group and its shareholders. KSH Group has businesses such as internal container depot (ICD), manufacturing and third-party (3PL or TPL) logistics. The transaction resulted in the demerger of KSH Infra from KSH Distriparks Pvt. Ltd.
KSH Infra operates two warehousing and industrial logistics parks in Pune. The warehouses, of total area one million square feet, are leased out to blue-chip multinationals.
Prateek Jhawar, director and head of infrastructure and real assets investment banking at Avendus Capital, said, “The Indian industrial warehousing and logistics sector has come a long way. Major transformations in the market, such as the rapid rise of e-commerce and GST (Goods and Services Tax) implementation, have led to an increased demand for warehousing in the country.” He added, “Warehousing and logistics are no longer being seen merely as business processes, rather, they have become an integral part of the retail value chain, critical for sustained growth.”
Morgan Stanley has placed the bet on India’s warehousing segment at a time when the category has outdone other segments of the real estate market. A host of global investors including CPPIB (Canada Pension Plan Investment Board) and Warburg Pincus have taken exposure to the segment and continue to pour big bucks in such projects.
Warburg Pincus has formed a platform with Embassy Group for development and management of warehousing assets in the country. CPPIB has backed warehousing developer IndoSpace to take their exposure to another level in the segment.