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Hubtown may exit Prabhadevi project, may get Rs 450 crore from the deal


MUMBAI: After serial entrepreneur C Sivasankaran's exited a realty project at Prabhadevi in central Mumbai, developer Hubtown, that owns 50% in it, is looking to do the same and move out of it completely, said two persons familiar with the development.

HubtownBSE 0.51 % hopes to get around Rs 450 crore from the deal, in line with what Siva had got earlier in July. It plans to sell its stake to another real estatedeveloper that can execute the project.

However, the stake sale depends on valuation since the developer, which has a consolidated debt of Rs 1,850 crore by March-end, would use the funds to repay some of its debt.

The 5.3-acre land parcel in Prabhadevi has a total development potential of 2 million sq ft and Hubtown is still awaiting some approvals to build an over 60-storey five-star hotel on the prime plot located near Siddhivinayak temple.

Hubtown, in an email response, said it did not wish to comment on market speculation.

In July, serial investor C Sivasankaran sold his entire 50% stake in the project for Rs 450 crore to private equity firm Red Fort Capital, valuing the joint venture on this Hindoostan Mills property at Rs 900 crore.

Siva had been looking to exit the venture and negotiated with prospective buyers including realty developers and private equity firms separately for almost a year until July when the deal with Red Fort Capital was struck. Hubtown, that held first right of refusal under the partnership agreement, was discussed as a prospective seller along with Siva then as well.

The Hubtown-Siva venture was planning to develop a hotel and serviced apartment project here, and the builder had received environment clearance, though a few approvals are yet to come from the civic authority.

Hubtown has been associated with this project since 2007 when it first bought the land parcel with DLF from the Thackersey family for Rs 350 crore. Hubtown was contemplating exiting this special purpose vehicle in 2009 itself since the project had been on hold because of the liquidity crisis.

However, it started developing the project after the Chennai-based entrepreneur Siva entered the venture. Siva had acquired partial stake in it from realty developer DLF in 2009.On Monday, shares of Hubtown closed at Rs 165.60 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, down 0.7% from Friday's close.