Ours is the era of innovation. The current generation believes in novel ideas that are both practical and profitable. They know which arenas, if tackled in a sagacious manner, can yield a high revenue; how to give the most value and services to house seekers; and how to attract the best investors while giving all stakeholders optimum satisfaction. This generation has burnt the midnight oil studying and learning the nuances of doing business. This, coupled with their enterprising nature, is a testimony to their grit and gumption.
Real estate is going through some unprecedented times. Modern day developers understand this, and therefore, are working toward creating an ecosystem that provides better customer experience and more transparency. The new generation’s avant-garde thinking and determination to excel come as a breath of fresh air. Being well-versed with the present day customer requirements, the new entrepreneurs are in a position to conceptualize the kind of realty sector which a futuristic India deserves. They constantly refine and remodel their strategies to gel with our society’s future orientation.
Let us know three such entrepreneurs, who have changed the norms of realty business in India:
Mohit Arora: When technology disrupts realty
Mohit Arora, Managing Director, Supertech Limited has made great strides in a short span of 10 years. This engineering graduate from Iowa State University is a believer in technology. He adapts to the changing market dynamics in realty and understands that there is no thumb rule for success in this business (as in other businesses). “The realty industry is shifting away from being an investor market and towards becoming an end-user/consumer-oriented market. And, since the consumer is king and it is he who decides what matters to him, we developers must be equally cautious of our offerings,” explains Mohit
When he joined his father’s business, there were eight on-going projects with a yearly turnover of about 200 crores. With him being at the helm of affairs, the average turnover rose to 2000 crores and continued so till 2018!
To the inevitable query of how his organization keeps up sales and revenue in a market that is not very upbeat on sentiments, Mohit says, “Ours is an approx. 65000 strong customer base today. So, the most noticeable way to make sales is by word of mouth. Every home-buyer consciously or inadvertently spreads the joys and sorrows of staying there with others. This determinant factor is not going to go anywhere. It will always stay. So, we must look at what we are giving to the customers. By the kind of services we offer, we make the consumer realize that it is the best investment they are making.”
So, we infer Supertech has been handing over possessions on time. Mohit says, “Of course. Ours is a promise-making effort and telling consumers that by the end of few years, they will get their promises delivered. We are delivering 10,000 houses a year. Of the 80,000 houses we are building we have delivered 40,000 already.”
A good leader needs a good team. Mohit says, “Success is a team effort and one ought to keep one’s employees happy and motivated as they are the ones who move the company forward.” He adds that “In addition to policies, perks, and bonuses, we also need to train our employees, especially in soft skills so that they are emotionally attached to the organization they work for. Employees must work like a family.”
Some of Supertech’s achievements in the recent years have been:
– High rise development in North India with project North Eye.
– Supernova: an 80-floor, mixed land use development, that is first of its kind in India.
– Tie up with Italian fashion brand Armani group to do interior designing of 100 residencies in project Supernova.
– Tie up with Walt Disney for Yamuna Expressway project.
– Sports Village project has 5 academies running by the names of 4 sportsmen (Sania Mirza, Shikhar Dhawan, Gagan – Narang, Jyoti Randhawa). It is of International standard and is the first of its kind in India.
– Up Country with an artificial beach at Yamuna Expressway.
– Providing affordable housing since 2010 (beginning with Eco Village).
Supertech has also upgraded its technology in the form of:
– ‘Pre-cast’, where houses are made in a factory and assembled on site. It took an investment of 250 crores to bring it from Europe and parts of Russia.
– Mivan Formwork using aluminium shuttering.
– Tunnel Formwork System from Turkey that needs one day to make a floor.
– Jump form shuttering system being used for the first time in North India.
To the budding entrepreneurs, Mohit’s advice is:
– Be adaptable to the changing environment
– Invest in people: customers and co-workers
– Be a good learner
Amit Gupta: Diversification is the future
Calling the shots!
Amit Gupta, Managing Director, formed Orris Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. in 2006. The MCA post-graduate from Birla Institute of Applied Sciences is a powerhouse of ideas and has christened his company as such. “Unlike the trading system of the earlier times, today we are moving towards making realty sector into an industry. Legislations such as RERA have been passed in that regard. There are forums like NCLT, NCDRC etc. to address aggrieved customers” quips Amit.
Real estate is undergoing a transformation since the current government frameworks came into effect. Orris’ rise is evident in its market valuation, which has doubled since 2006.
No more fly by Night Operators
To the query of who is a serious player, Amit gives a very reasonable answer. He says, “Gone are the days of minting quick money. The right kinds of developers are those who did the right thing even when RERA was absent. They are not bothered about the market scenario as they work earnestly.”
He also says that transition is a difficult period and focussed teamwork is the key to brilliance. “One has to rope in highly competent professionals and allow them to grow. We are recruiting the best of professionals from IIMs and IITs,” says Amit with modesty.
Growth is about diversification and Amit has brought in as many as six verticals. He says, “I think it is my way of contributing to the New India and helping build a New India.”
– The Real Estate vertical is the backbone of the entire group.
– Hospitality is another, where Orris is making budget hotels and resorts in the country. Tie-ups and discussions are going on for this purpose.
– Education is another vertical. The plan is to open ten K-12 schools in New Gurugram.
– Renewable Energy is presently more of a subdued area in which they are in the process of expanding.
– Manufacturing vertical comprises production of composite panel, glass and silicon.
On the question of uplifting the market sentiment, especially when the economy is not as expected, Amit adds, “We must understand that the period of boom is over. Market appreciation will not skyrocket as unsold inventory and competitive pricing gives the end user infinite options to choose from. Realty sector has to come to terms with these hard facts.”
In order to boost morale, Amit visits his work sites at least once a week. This helps build coordination. Also, he has innovated by bringing suppliers and contractors and others into the communication loop by conversing through “WhatsApp Chat Groups for people to bring their issues at the platform. This creates a transparent discussion forum which eventually leads to better decision-making,” Amit says.
Innovate with Systems and Processes
Amit wants Orris to become a renowned corporate company and has put in his best. His words of wisdom for up and coming entrepreneurs are:
– Build a strong and educated team of professionals.
– Be dynamic in decision making and patient in expectations.
– Nurture your projects to grow and wait for the best fruit to pluck.
Nikhil Gupta: Striving for excellence
Nikhil Gupta, Director, Ajnara India Limited, says, “as a developer or an organisation, we have always looked at ways to better ourselves, wherein not only diversification but other aspects hold a key role as well. We have diversified into various themed projects which gives us the upper crest among other renowned developers in the region. We have worked tirelessly towards bringing luxury closer to the general masses wherein everyone can dream of owning luxury within their budget. Not only have we diversified into FMCG retail with our chain of supermarkets under the brand name of All In, but now are into the IT and Hospitality sectors as well. Going ahead with commercial projects was a big leap for us as people fail to recognise its importance in today’s world. As much is the importance of Housing for All, equally is Commercial for All important. We will be crossing a total of 25000 deliveries by the end of this financial year with another 8000 – 9000 units under construction.”
Modernization is the key to the future
Nikhil adds, “In the past few years, we have inculcated a lot of modernisation, not just in our construction but in our business model as well. We have aggressively opted for the use of Information Technology in our day to day operations, which not only helps us integrate platforms but also reduces processing times within departments. After sales service has been another key focus area where we have strategized and gone all guns blazing in order to satisfy our customers because sales do not just end with the handing over of the keys to their house. We have been making tie-ups with the best service providers in the market for our projects in order to ensure that customers who move in their new homes are treated to a wealth of quality experience, something which is unparalleled to any other experience in the world.”
Considering employee satisfaction as a prime area of focus, Ajnara values its employees and takes that extra step to make them feel valued. The company has also started moving towards modern ways of construction in the recent past wherein they have started focusing on sustainable structures that have a lesser carbon footprint.
Nikhil says, “In the years ahead, we wish to take the brand perception to even greater heights. We want to make the brand synonymous with quality experience wherein you not only purchase a home but you have the experience of a lifetime, one which you can never forget. With more and more technologies being introduced in real estate, it is very certain that construction will get faster and better. Not only will this bring down the cost of construction, it will also make the end product more affordable for the masses.
When one talks about risks, let me remind of a very famous saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. This clearly denotes the importance of planning in the running of an organisation. Immaculate planning and vision in approach help one reach greater heights.”