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Report: Kotak Realty emerges as new bidder for US$525M Indian fund

Kotak Realty Fund is competing with Blackstone Group LP's Indian arm in a bid to acquire IL&FS Investment Managers Ltd.'s US$525 million IL&FS India Realty Fund I, Livemint reported, citing two people aware of the development.

One of the unnamed sources was quoted in the Oct. 5 report as saying that "it is not certain if any deal will materialize," noting that discussions with the fund's investors are still in progress. Livemint noted that a deal for the fund could be worth roughly US$200 million.

The new buyer, according to the news agency, was established in 2005 and is a part of Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd. subsidiary Kotak Investment Advisors Ltd. To date, Kotak Realty has invested in 40 projects and funded more than 65 million square feet of residential developments as well as 6 million square feet of commercial projects.

In July, it was reported that a deal is already being worked out between the U.S. private equity giant's local arm and IL&FS Investment, which is a subsidiary of Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Ltd.

Aside from IL&FS India Realty Fund I, several other IL&FS Investment-owned funds are in exit mode, including the US$117 million IL&FS Milestone Fund I and the US$103 million Saffron India Real Estate Fund I, the online publication noted.

Jones Lang LaSalle Inc.'s Indian branch — which took note, on its Return of the Investor report, of the improvement of private equity investments in the Indian real estate sector — is advising IL&FS Investment on IL&FS India Realty Fund I's sale, Livemint added.