Realty firm Unitech’s sales bookings increased by 29 per cent to Rs 678 crore during the first six months of this fiscal mainly on the back of higher sales in the commercial segment. The Gurgaon-based developer had sold properties worth Rs 524 crore in the April-September period of last fiscal, according to a company presentation.
In terms of volume, sales bookings rose to 2.5 million sq ft in the first half of this fiscal from Rs 0.9 million sq ft in the year-ago period.
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Out of total sales bookings, the non-residential segment contributed 2.15 million sq ft area worth Rs 539 crore, while housing segment accounted for merely 0.35 million sq ft at Rs 139 crore. Gurgaon contributed to 88 per cent of the sales in value terms.
During April-September period of last fiscal, commercial segment contributed a sales bookings of 0.16 million sq ft for Rs 140 crore and housing 0.74 million sq ft for Rs 384 crore.
The average sales realisation has dropped to Rs 2,714 per sq ft during the period under review from Rs 5,815 per sq ft in the corresponding period of last year.
“Demand for residential property continues to be sluggish. However, with the interest rates beginning to soften and expectation of further softening of rates in the near future, there could be a revival in demand especially in the affordable and mid-income segments in the coming quarters,” Unitech Managing Director Ajay Chandra had said last week.
Unitech reported a consolidated net loss of Rs 13 crore in the second quarter of the current fiscal against a net loss of Rs 65.70 crore in the year-ago period. Income from operations fell to Rs 373 crore during the July-September period of 2016-17 fiscal from Rs 639.6 crore in the year-ago period.
“During the quarter, a subsidiary of the company divested its stake in a hotel property, which resulted in a one-time loss of Rs 18.39 crore. Excluding this one time loss, company’s operations were profitable during the quarter,” Unitech had said in a statement.
In the first six months of this fiscal, Unitech’s net loss narrowed to Rs 57.82 crore, from Rs 345.33 crore a year ago. Income from operations fell to Rs 860.88 crore during the period, from Rs 1,021.03 crore in the first six months of last fiscal. The consolidated net debt stood at Rs 5,818 crore as of September 30, 2016.
Unitech, which has been facing consumer protests and complaints due to delay in execution of projects, said that the pace of construction work has increased after putting in place escrow mechanisms for certain projects to ring-fence the balance receipts from customers.
The company is working towards creating similar mechanisms for the balance projects as well, Chandra had said.