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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Kanakia to exit Ahmedabad hotel

This story first appeared in DNA Money edition on Tuesday, Mar 19, 2013.

The promoters of Kanakia Group have begun the process of divesting their stakes in four hotel projects by putting the upcoming Novotel branded five-star hotel in Ahmedabad on the block.

Private equity firm Sun Apollo, which owns the land on which the project is coming up, will also exit the project. “Offer for sale has been floated in the market for the mixed-use development comprising the hotel and commercial components,” said a source.

Rasesh B Kanakia, chairman of the eponymous group, confirmed the selloff plan. “The hotel, now in the final stage of construction, is expected to get operational by June. We  will exit the development at the right price.”

Kanakia has mandated the Indian arm of an international property consultant (IPC) to find a buyer.

Located off the Sarkhej-Gandhinagar highway, the mixed-use development features 176 hotel rooms, eight serviced apartments, food and beverage courts, meeting and banqueting facilities, a business centre and office space spread across two floors.

The hotel will be managed by Accor Group, the international hotel chain.

Kanakia did not share details about the money spent on developing the project. A 2011  environment clearance proposal submitted by the asset holding company, Atithya Inn, had estimated the project cost to be Rs124.44 crore, and said it will feature 235 guest rooms in all and 43 offices.

Typically, prospective buyers look for either a pre-operation or three-year-old hotels that have already settled in the market, said Kanakia. “We are developers. We will build hotels and sell them if the right opportunity comes by.”

Kanakia has one operational hotel (Courtyard by Marriott) in north Mumbai while another three projects are under various stages of development, including an Ibis (location unknown) and a Hyatt Place (Goa).

Kanakia has already sold the Cinemax multiplex chain to PVR earlier this year.

Follow Ashish K Tiwari on twitter @ashishktiwari

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