Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has sold its 50 per cent stake in R City Mall in Mumbai to its joint venture (JV) partner, Runwal Developers, for ₹1,000 crore with a four-time return on its initial investment.
GIC and Runwal Developers have been JV partners since 2006, while the mall has been operational for around 13 years. Spread over 1.2 million square feet of retail space, the mall has grown over the years and has over 300 Indian and international brands. It was set up as a greenfield project and was among the very first deals in the real estate sector in the country attracting foreign direct investment.
The objective of Runwal Developers in buying out GIC and owning it is to grow its annuity portfolio and become the largest retail player in Mumbai.
Post the Covid pandemic, mall activity has surged and according to ANAROCK Consultants, about 25 million square feet (sqft) of mall space will be added across the top seven cities in the country in the next 4-5 years. In 2022, the top seven cities added around 2.6 million sqft of mall space, up 27 per cent on year.
While existing malls are being renovated and refurbished to attract more footfalls, new malls are also coming up driven by rising consumption in urban areas, even as rentals are shooting up.
The current mall stock across the country is estimated at around 51 million sqft with Mumbai, the National Capital Region and Bengaluru accounting for 62 per cent of the total.