Realty developers Lodha Group has launched its maiden investment fund for startups focused on smart city solutions and overall real estate sector. With an initial investment corpus of Rs 50 crores, the company will provide angel funding or project capital along with business opportunities, industry contacts and mentor support.
Lodha Group’s Startup Investment Fund will invest in startups at all stages of the development cycle, including early stage startups, which are focused on creating value in the real estate and smart city space in India, the developer said in a release. Within real estate, the company will look at all aspects of the value chain including digital marketing, analytics, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and smart city services.
With the launch of the Startup Investment Fund, the company is looking to bring significant expertise, knowledge and resources for the technology led solution providers that aim to serve the smart city and real estate space. The fund is aiming to address the prevailing inefficiencies in the sector with the use of technology and smart solutions. Lodha Group is currently developing around 41 million sq ft of residential real estate across 31 ongoing projects in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Pune, Hyderabad and London. For the year ended 2015-16, the company registered new sales of Rs 6,400 crore, while it delivered 6,800 units across projects.
Lodha also added that the company has been working in a focused manner to establish this platform over the last few months. The fund has already vetted two-three business ideas and the first round of investments will be completed by March 2017. He expects demonetization and decline in interest rates alongside the government’s new incentives for low cost housing will boost the overall growth of the real estate sector.
“Our fund’s philosophy is in line with Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi’s three core campaigns – Startup India, Housing for All and Demonetization. Real estate sector is unarguably an important sector for India’s economy being the second largest employer in the country after agriculture. As India ushers in a new era on the back of path-breaking policy changes such as demonetization, RERA and GST, the sector too will reap its benefits in the long run,” said Abhishek Lodha, MD, Lodha Group.