Lodha Group is looking forward to launch its initial public offering (IPO) over the next 12-15 months. A report by Business Standard quoted Abhishek Lodha, managing director of the company who said they are actively considering appointing of bankers, although the timing of the IPO will depend on market conditions.
“Our sales have been stronger since the second half of the past financial year. Since Dussera, sales have started picking up…Buyers are smarter today. They do not buy from anybody. They are buying from select names,”
– Abhishek Lodha, managing director, Lodha Group
The company has emerged as the biggest property developer in the country in recent years, beating DLF. Lodha Group delivered 6,800 homes and registered sales of INR64.3 billion (INR6,430 crore) in FY2015/16. This puts the company ahead of DLF whose sales were way behind at INR31.5 billion.
While the company is looking to take its sales to INR75 billion this year, it has not been free from its share of troubles. Lodha Group was recently downgraded by Moody’s on its corporate family ratings and US-denominated bonds. The company also roped in Piramal Fund Management recently and raised INR4.25 billion for a central Mumbai project.
Lodha Group no stranger to debt
Debt-laden realty companies are looking at the primary markets to raise fresh funds and with a debt pile of INR133 billion, Lodha Group is no stranger here. Abhishek Lodha’s remark is indication by yet another real estate developer of a flurry of IPOs from realty sector. The same approach was followed by infrastructure companies last year when MEP Infrastructure, PNC Infratech and Sadbhav Infrastructure Projects brought their IPOs. Realty may be following infrastructure’s lead as Paranjape Schemes and Dilip Buildcon have already received SEBI approval. While Pune-based Paranjape Schemes is a pure real estate player, Dilip Buildcon gets majority of its business from infrastructure operations such as road and highway construction, irrigation but also operates in commercial buildings.