Interview of Brotin Banerjee, MD & CEO, Tata Housing Development Company Ltd
How do you see the real estate market poised in India today?
From a sector steeped in murky deals to the one led by corporate entities, the Indian realty industry has undergone a tremendous change in the past few years. The transformation started since 2005, when government allowed FDI in real estate, which saw lot of interests from corporate and MNCs in this space. The next wave of transformation started with the entry of more number of corporate houses into the business giving the sector an image makeover. Led by corporates with strong business foundation, the sector started adopting corporate governance practice where corporate social responsibilities were given prominence and transparency has started to be the norm in the industry
Indian real estate has huge potential demand in almost every segment including commercial, residential, retail, industrial and hospitality, etc. The pan India demand for office space is estimated to be 196 million sq ft by 2013. The pan India residential demand is estimated to be over 7.5 million units by 2013 across all categories including Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), affordable, mid and luxury segments. (Source: Cushman & Wakefield)
There have also been radical changes in the dealings of the sector, which previously lacked ethics though is turning more investor-friendly with the onset of corporate governance, transparency and an increased sense of accountability among the players.
What has been the marketing mantra for Tata Housing? How has these initiatives worked for the brand?
The real estate sector has become highly competitive in the past few years with new projects coming up across India. Developers have to constantly endeavour to create unique, innovative marketing and sales strategies in order to create visibility for their projects. At Tata Housing, the onus of driving the project and taking it to the next level is primarily the responsibility of the marketing team. Along with the entire team of brand, media and communication managers, we focus immensely on distinctive planning and execution of our innovative projects instead of developing a typical run- of-the-mill strategy.
Audiences in India are more receptive towards the advertisements they witness on various ad platforms. Specifically, outdoor / billboard advertisements act as a follow up medium and create top of the mind recall for patrons which effectively lead towards building further awareness and sale of the brand. Given the clutter of existing players, the market demands differentiation in the presentation of messages led by innovative idea and technologies. We prefer playing with new ideas and adopt innovative methodologies that have come to our aid in minimizing our marketing spends by 2% with faster turnaround of the project.
Tata Housing made it to the prestigious Limca Book of Records 2013 for ‘Mumbai Wallbook’, the lengthiest wall painting activity held in Mumbai. Tata Housing’s Gateway Capital made history with a unique strategy of selling its units through an IPO-styled concept where we generated an order booking worth Rs.450 crores in a single day.
Our successful projects are the result of our in-depth understanding of the market and customers need, which time and again differentiates us from the competition
You have also come out with a project targeting senior citizens, can you talk about the project and the potential in this segment for Tata Housing?
Research and data pointed towards this segment which seemed to be going unattended and showed a huge deficit in terms of the number of senior citizens in the country as opposed to housing facilities available to them. Riva Residences is one of India’s largest integrated residential complexes for the senior emeritus in Bengaluru
been into premium and luxury projects quickly turn to affordable segments and when there is an improvement in the market, they go back to premium and luxury. Hence it totally depends upon the business model the developer is comfortable with.
As far as Tata Housing is concerned, we straddle across all consumer segments from value to luxury housing, by offering products ranging from Rs. 7 lakhs to over Rs 14 crores. We have launched a subsidiary company, Smart Value Homes Limited, that focuses exclusively on value and affordable housing while the parent Tata Housing focuses on developing premium and luxury residences. We have found successes in both the business model owning to unique process and technologies adoption.
Source: Paul Writer