Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Old wine in new Nano bottle

I guess am getting old and cynical. Last year Sabeer Bhatia was announcing a Nano city in Haryana. This year in Gujarat. There is another one planned by Vinod Dham near Hyderbad. There is a smart city planned in Kochi. How many nano cities do we need ? All these nano cities are fronts for real estate plays by policitians and land owners. If there is something to emulate it is the Mahendra World City in Chennai. It took 6+ years to get it all setup and humming. All these one trick ponies are trying hard to sell the sabarmati river front as lifestyle living to the NRI Gujju community along with the community in Mumbai. To Modi's credit he has done a good job, however he is 10 years too late in trying to move IT to Ahmedabad. Maybe he can try Cleantech and other upcoming industries. Maybe it becomes the Green Valley, though I doubt how he will curtail the pollution and population and prevent Ahmedabad from becoming another Mumbai or Bengaluru. Ironically in Gujarathi 'Nanoo' means small or tiny. All one can hope is the bubble and Rokda (Cash) become Nanoo

Gujarat may be next Silicon Valley

AHMEDABAD: Hotmail Co-founder Sabeer Bhatia said he looks toward cultural innovation in Gujarat and has plans to develop the state as the next Silicon Valley.

"We have got Letter of Intent (LoI) from Carneige Mellon University for setting up a Nano city that will have software development facility for niche sectors such as nano technology, bio-sciences and material sciences," Bhatia said, during the inauguration of Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit which began on Monday.

"With world class infrastructure here and support of the Gujarat government, we can make the state as next Silicon Valley of India by setting up a Nano city here," Bhatia said.

Sharing his experiences on emergence of silicon valley decades ago, Bhatia said the innovation at that time had led to phenomenal creation of value, and the model could be replicated here.

"Five decades ago Hewlett Packard created a small hub outside Standford that led to the birth of Silicon Valley, and in the last 10 years I have seen 1 trillion dollar of value being created because of cultural innovation," he added.

"India has huge potential for it, with a population of 1.2 billion people we create around half-a-million engineers annually, but somehow they are not able to make to make it to top echelons in key innovative hubs, therefore we need a nano city," Bhatia said.

The innovation can come through education and the Nano city will play a key role in software development for niche segments.


Anonymous said...

At least in the near future we need nothing. Just jobs to survive on. All these nano cities concept is for these people to make money.


Anonymous said...

All universities in US are fighting to keep alive and preventing layoffs. I don't know how CMU has money for this project. I think Bhatia has some scheme to make money for CMU from India. Some ponzi scheme.

Anonymous said...

Infosys to hire 27,000 by March

14 Jan 2009, 0617 hrs IST, ET Bureau

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BANGALORE: Infosys Technologies said it will hire around 27,000 professionals by March this year, up from around 25,000 annual hiring the firm had
projected earlier.

For the third quarter ending December 31, 2008, Infosys had made a gross addition of 5,997 with the net intake being 2,772.

“We will be honouring every offer that we have made, in fact for the incoming freshers, we have sent letters telling them what period they would be joining,” said Infosys HR head TV Mohandas Pai . The firm has made offers to around 20,000 engineering graduates for the next year. The attrition rate for Infosys has come down to 11.8% at the end of Q3 as against 12.8% during the September quarter.

“The tolerance for non-performance has come down to zero,” he added. The IT major also said, the BPO number addition has dipped at the end of the third quarter, with the total headcount number standing at 16,941 as against 17,327 at the end of the second quarter.

Anonymous said...

Indian real estate buyers tempted by dream home opportunity
January 13, 2009 by OPPE News

Indian buyers are now starting to see the slowing housing market as an opportunity to “buy a dream home” a survey has suggested.

MagicBricks said its poll showed about 87 per cent of potential real estate buyers now see the proliferation of discounts as a temptation.

The firm conducted the research to assess what impact lower home loan rates were having on the country’s struggling housing market.

Responses were sought from the Bangalore, Kolkata, Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai real estate markets, along with housing markets in some smaller cities.

Executives said those polled

“welcomed measures such as differential home loan interest rates for budget homes”.

Experts also said the results suggest government moves to kick-start the real estate market could finally be having an effect.

Ms E Jayashree Kurup, the company’s head of content and research, said buyers from all social groups and age ranges were now looking to enter the housing market.

The survey also showed how much people expect to spend on a home, with about 52 per cent saying they could spend between Rs 10 and 30 lakh.

MagicBricks is one of India’s leading real estate research firms, regularly polling opinion on housing trends and values.

Anonymous said...

Makaan.com show in Pune attracts 5793 property seekers
Published on Tue, Jan 13, 2009 at 11:34 , Updated at Tue, Jan 13, 2009 at 13:05
Source : Moneycontrol.com

From CNBC TV18

Makaan.com the fastest growing online Indian real estate portal by People Group recently concluded a mega property show in Pune on 10th & 11th January 2009. Hosted at Best Western Pride Hotel, the show witnessed participation from over 25 leading developers from Pune & Mumbai, showcasing more than 87 new projects in the affordable housing segment. Properties ranging from 10 lacs to 1 crore were on display & included options like villas, flats and apartments for sale.

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Exceeding all expectations, the show attracted over 5793 genuine property seekers including 1630 families. Providing a platform for detailed interaction between property seekers and builders, the two-day show is likely to close business worth 15 Crores.

Commenting on the success of the show, Mr. Aditya Verma, Business Head Makaan.com said, “The intent behind the show was to provide a realistic platform to both property seekers and sellers. According to a survey conducted by Makaan.com in November’08, 73% of the property seekers in Pune were looking for affordable properties for sale (less than 40 lacs). We organized this show keeping this aspect in mind and are happy to see the phenomenal response.”

Speaking about the event Mr. Santosh Kataria, Partner - Aditya Builders, “The two-day show has generated good number of genuine enquiries. The crowd turn up was splendid in number as well as in quality and mainly included families. We observed that maximum enquiries, at the show were for 2BHK flats and the ones for ready possession. Overall it was a professionally organized and managed event. We would surely like to participate in future events of www.makaan.com”.

Aditya Builders were the lead sponsor of the show, which was organized in association with Nandgude Patil, Samarttha Gayatrree Properties and Pawar Builders. Check www.makaan.com/punepropertyshow for details.

Redefining real estate in India, Makaan.com is aggressively expanding customer reach through the property show route and plans to host 10 such property shows across the country this year. Customers in turn, have expressed immense satisfaction with this model, turning out in record numbers to select from among thousands of properties under one roof. Pramil Shastri, an IT consultant with a leading IT company in Pune summed it up best saying, “I have been searching an apartment for sale under 26 - 30 lacs for past 7-8 months, but have not found many options in the city. I am glad that I attended the show, as it has not only helped me find various options under my preferred price bracket, but now I can also explore properties in lesser range.


Kannan said...

One cannot create "Silicon Valley" just by constructing few buildings with glass facade....

Read book called "Regional Advantage" to undestand how silicon valley formed around bay area. Not because of HP as someone said. Also read about silicon valley and Route 128 (Boston).

Also here is Paul Graham's writing abt silicon valey....


Rajesh Jain & Sabeer Bhatia...all are ass holes.... looking for some money as they have spent all the money that came from goofy ventures.

-- Kannan

Kannan said...



Cool Head said...

Some anonymous trolls are posting "News" dished out by real estate lobby in the comments section here. Most of the "news" seems doctored. MagicBricks and Makaan are ventures of real estate lobby. Obviously they will plant news stories stating that there are many people rushing to buy homes. In that case why have these exhibitions and melas guys? Your phones should never stop ringing as eager buyers are jostling with one other to "book" flats/villas in your dream projects?

Observer said...

The realty websites are definitely going to put a positive spin on the news. However, I think it cannot be denied that there are also many foolish Indians who do not think long-term. They see interest rates coming down and start looking at property purchases. A few years into the future, if interest rates go up again substantially (because of inflation, since oil will definitely go up in price once the US economy recovers), then these same foolish buyers who flock to purchase property now will be regretting their decision.

Real estate brokers know this, and they will keep chanting the mantra of lower interest rates to fool the gullible. The wise amongst us should try to convince any friends or relatives from making a mistake now.

catch22 said...

Another interesting article about people abandoning cars in the airport and leaving Dubai in droves.

Anonymous said...

Interesting article.


Anonymous said...

Can some one clarify on reservation in Nano city? Else we need to take matter to
…………. This is the election season & we will ensure that without reservation
the Nano will not have any approval.

Before comparing US or Silicon Valley to any such project, one has to understand the cause of success. US have always welcomed the top talent from any country, religion, community, cast. Even today the EB1 category dates for immigration are immediate.

Annon@9:37 PM is not answering the question. If market is going to so good, why you are not returning canceled booking money.
--In Pune Blue Ridge mega township project, even though you will cancel the booking, you will not get back the money till some other fool book the apartment.
--Some builders are charging 10-15% price of apartment, as cancellation charge.
--Even after getting so many bookings why the “Aditya Builders” is desperately advertising for buyers on Magicbricks?

So Guys let it fall then only pick up, minimum 50% price cut is guaranty.


Observer said...

Just as I had suspected, the maximum number of crooks are in the real estate sector. Do not trust any of the numbers put out by the real estate companies. Most of these companies have fictitious sales and imaginary public profits meant to entice more innocent investors into the market.

When board directors are rapidly leaving these companies, then you know something is very wrong. I am posting some bits from the link that Anon@3.31pm posted above.

Indian Property Market Faces Major Issues

gangsterSpeculation that accounting practices in the Indian real estate sector are suspect is running high at the moment, causing many (myself included) to wonder just how far the sector is going to crash and how many frauds are going to come to light. Senior board members of no less than six top real estate companies have resigned unexpectedly in the past few months, in much the same way rats leave a sinking ship.

Directors and senior executives of previously well-respected firms such as Omaxe, Puravankara Projects, Kolte Patil, Akruti City, Parsvnath, BPTP and Ansal Properties have resigned. On Friday, there were rumours that DLF CFO Ramesh Sanka had also resigned, pulling the stock down in early trades. Mr. Sanka later denied he had resigned.

Normally, it is not a noteworthy event when a company’s chief financial officer sells his ESOPs, or the executive director of a company resigns. But this is happening in one particular market - real estate. Though officially, ‘personal reasons’ have been cited as the cause in most resignations, industry officials said the current level of corporate governance in the real estate sector is an important reason for exits. Audit experts say accounting practices employed by most Indian developers have caused concern among professionals.

Observer said...

From the same link above. This is how fictitious "sales" are booked. Brokers and builders together are trying to prop up the market by giving an illusion that sales are only down by half. If sales are off by only 40% or so, then why has the BSE realty index gone down by almost 85%?


“Corporate governance issue has always been traditionally attached to the Indian real estate sector and domestic institutions kept real estate away from their investment portfolios,” said Amber Maheshwari, director DTZ, an international property consultancy. “After FDI was allowed in real estate, developers have been trying to be more transparent and started to consider corporate governance as a serious issue. However, many firms are still following highly unethical practices,” he added.

Currently, real estate firms are facing an acute cash shortage, with sales drying up debts mounting. “Balance sheets of real estate firms are in a bad shape. In many cases, sales are almost equal to receivables, meaning that sales being shown by real estate companies actually have no meaning, as these are only on paper. No cash is being received by the company,” said a top executive at a Delhi-based realty company who also resigned recently. In some cases, sales are being made to friendly brokers, who don’t need to pay more than 5%, so even if sales figure look good, in real terms, it doesn’t help the company.

Anonymous said...

In India, the buyer is the sucker

He has to sign on the dotted line of Agreement sale where the terms and conditions are so much in favour of the builders

The bubble has to burst by May 2009.

Do not buy till prices come down by atleast 60 % in Mumbai

Anonymous said...

another gangadin bites the dust


Anonymous said...

I'm really scared. it is going to get really ugly. Even if 20% workforce in IT which is like 200K people lose jobs, it is going to be a nightmare. It may cause:
--Salaries to shrink by 50%.
--People who lost jobs would be depressed.
--Marriages would break.
--Higher crime and even civil unrest.
--RE will definitely collapse by more than 50%.

A lot of IT folks are now used to a good lifestyle like travelling abroad, living in high profile hotels, driving good cars, eating out at expensive places, investments in RE and other good things of life. All this could go away in one stroke of a second and no one is prepared to face it. But it is coming very soon the way things are around the world.


OWL said...

Even i agree with Vulture bhai. minimum 70% fall is guaranty. OWL

Anonymous said...


I think minimum 90% fall.


tejass said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Observer said...

Looks like Anon@10.26pm above is getting frustrated with Vulture, and is trying to make fun of Vulture by saying 90% fall guaranteed etc. Take it easy Anon@10.26pm, you liked it when prices kept going up and people were suffering by not being able to buy houses.

Showing your frustration here is not going to help. Vulture is going to be proven right.

Observer said...

Where are Ashish and The Boss? I visited The Boss's website


and no posts from September onwards. This is about the time Lehman Brothers crashed, and the whole thing came tumbling down. Curious what happened to them. Their old posts are still here on this website, I read a few of them from May. I feel like laughing now when I read them. A gem from Ashish from a few months back.

Ashish - "Prices will keep going up by 12% every year."

Hahahahahahaha :-)

Anonymous said...

Malabar Hill higest bid was 125,000/sqft. I think it will fall by 90% minimum.


Anonymous said...

Inflation eases to 5.24%

15 Jan 2009, 1232 hrs IST, ET Bureau

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MUMBAI: Inflation for the week ended January 3rd dropped to 5.24% on back of easing of prices in all three major components of Wholesale Price Index
(WPI), primary articles, fuel items and manufactured articles. Headline inflation as measured by wholesale price index was at 5.9% in the week before that, while it was at 4.3% in the corresponding week last year.

The drop in inflation was in tune with expectations of bond markets.

While inflation has cooled off in most of the segments, inflation rate for food articles still remains a concern. It is hovering around 10%, while the corresponding week last year saw food price inflation at 1.86%. With the impact of truckers strike factoring in the week ended January 10, analysts are expecting food articles inflation to shoot up, triggering a 50 basis point upward spike in Whole Sale Price Inflation.

The fuel index with a weight of 14.23% in the WPI witnessed further deflation in the week. The annual deflation for fuel index is currently at 1.31%. With the expected retail fuel price cuts happening the prices of fuel index will show further deflation.

"The downward trend (in inflation) will continue. The expectation is inflation will come down to still more manageable numbers - 3-4% over the next three months," said Ashok Chawla, Secretary, and Department of Economic Affairs. But independent economists like Sudbadha Rao, Chief economist at Yes Bank are expecting inflation to fall at a faster pace to enter 1.5%-2% range by March. D K Joshi, Principal Economist at CRISIL said, "If inflation keeps on falling at the current pace, I am expecting a deflation for a brief period in July and August due to the high base effect."

Inflation for the week ended November 8, was downwardly revised to 8.71% as against provisional numbers of 8.9% released earlier.


Anonymous said...

Another bubble in making by June 09 as we will see banks aggresively lending. Lot of people may fall in this trap.

Banks have excess liquidity and by June 09 will start lending aggressively.

Property prices have already corrected between 10 to 50% depending on the area.

People will get tempted because of this correction and can fall in this trap.

Anonymous said...

Lodha managed to sell more then 100 flats in a weeks time. This is at one end of the world in Thane but still they have managed to sell @ Rs. 3024. Project is named CASA UNIVIS

I want this group to comment. I am totally confused with all kind of news.


Anonymous said...

sridhar rates at lodha are in range of 3000-3200. same were selling at 3900-4100 last yr. As per gyan here, minimum 50%, 70% and 90% fall is guaranty. So should you wait till atleast the priceis 1950 psf? And is your info on flats booked true?

Cool Head said...

Most times the bookings in these projects are fake. If you ask names, they tell you that this falt is booked by Mr. Shah, that by Mr. Kulkarni and so on (common names in India). Things are opaque so you never come to know. Secondly the best flats are always shown as booked, so that they create a scarcity mentality and book the not so good flats first.
Thirdly nobody wants to be the first to book ( a bakra) so they re-assure you that several have booked it before you. The project mentioned above is right now a barren patch of land with nothing whatsoever, so booking seems risky

Vik said...

Cool head.
It was the same when my folks bought an apt 30 years ago. The builders have few well known techniques to close the sale. FUD works everywhere. As of now we have a herd mentality in India and the herd has changed direction so the builders are getting trampled from all sides

Yoko Ono's Owner said...

@Sridhar - on Lodha Casa Univers -
I've personally visited the site and had a look around - right now - as I write - they are building the foundation. There is a sample flat and an excellent looking one - typical of all Lodha projects. But there is one caveat - true they were pitching this as Rs.2997/psf and now raised it by some Rs.80/psf. Which is all fine - because everything is negotiable *wink wink*.

But the big point is that possession is end 2010 - you can take that as mid-2011 thats for sure. Also THEY NEED THE MONEY. Badly.

A backgrounder - Lodha has high cost debt right now - part of the "payments" will go to servicing them and remaining they will try to borrow during 2009 at lower interest rates. Which they will do so successfully. But the point is little further ahead (actually 10 kms) on either side of that location - one towards Dahisar (Lodha Aqua) and other towards Thane (really good project Lodha Luxeria - will see good price drop from here - Jan'09) - these are ready projects quoting at 30% lower price of that quoted to me in October 2007. Apparently a fully book project is now 20% to 30% booked. Huh! how times change! The same arrogant folks at Lodha are courteous and now following up with me twice a week. "Sir - we are ready to close - we will do something special for you". Yes these are the exact words used and I am not exaggerating anything here - 'cos I am really in the market for a flat. But, I am waiting till October 2009 to buy - more for personal reasons but also the fact that prices still have some way to go - but like someone said here 90% drop thats not possible. Maybe another 25% - for sure. A total halving of prices of 2007 is assured. But even after the drop - I dont see a recovery for a while. Sure they can be a sort of a bubble - but that will only allow people to exit inventory but the downward bias to pricing will resume. Albeit at a slower pace - as inflation will be back sometime in 2011. Oil will flare up and will screw up India's finances. So if you are buying - factor in high interest rates - and take the lessons learnt in 2008 of high interest rates, high emi as a lesson in fiscal planning and prudence before making that purchase. A property is once in a lifetime expense for most of us. Its better to be less ambitious and be within reach. Trust me - that works better...especially since peace of mind is assured. Good luck friends.

Anonymous said...

Mr.Sridhar, did yu book a flat in Casa Univis project, if yes please reply to me crudeslife@gmail.com, i would like to discuss some importatnt issues.



Anonymous said...

Dear all,

Any one who had bookes aflat in casa univis, Ghodbunder road, Thane project or planning to book in the future please reply to me at crudeslife@gmail.com.