Agrani Infra Believes in Encompassing Traditional Charm with Modern Lifestyle

Shiv Kumar
"Our focus is directed towards carrying out infrastructural development for our customers satisfaction by continuous and effective improvement in quality, cost and time. Our objective is to construct the building of better communities rather than just buildings. Our strategies are to drive an optimum balance between the construction and its natural surroundings and between the traditional and the modern methods. Location, design and quality are the core differentiators of all our projects, giving us a strong competitive advantage over others," says Mr. Shiv Kumar, Managing Director, Agrani Infra Developer Pvt. Ltd. in an interview with S.A.David.

Can you please tell us about Agrani Infra Developer and its objectives?
Agrani Infra is a young company that aims to emerge as a respectful player by providing quality residential, commercial and institutional spaces in the organized sector and fulfilling the latent demand for world-class infrastructure.

Our focus is directed towards carrying out infrastructural development to our customers satisfaction by continuous and effective improvement in quality, cost and time. Our objective is the building of better communities rather than just buildings. We believe that the mere construction of buildings is insufficient. We derive strategies to drive an optimum balance between the construction and its natural surroundings including the traditional and the modern ones.

Agrani Infra as a group is evolving from being a mere name to an established brand that symbolizes complete customer satisfaction.

As, opposed to the trend of carving out a niche by catering to a particular clientele i.e. the elite customer or the middle class that looks for affordable housing, we look at the requirements of each segment. We believe that affordable housing does not mean that a segment is treated differently in the name of affordability. Each customer of Agrani Group is a valued asset and so has a right to expect the best, which is our commitment.

What is the inspiration behind launching this company?
Agrani Infra Developer was constituted with the objective of building a Real Estate Company based in Bihar that could hold its own and compete with companies recognized at the national level. The founder Late Ganesh Pd. Singh decided to walk the road less travelled and take on projects that has not yet been undertaken in Bihar. The idea was to project the face of changing Bihar.

Started in 1962 with the work of construction, contracts, transportation, buildings and other such related activities, the company over the years has been known by various names and in 2010 it got constituted and registered as Agrani Infra Developer Pvt. Ltd. Now after reorganizing the ongoing business, it is currently working in the format of a modern day company.

Why one should choose and rely on Agrani Infra? Also please let us know your competitive edge over competitors?
Agrani Infra is a part of the Agrani Group. Vc The other older companies that are a part of the Agrani Group have been working successfully in the areas of trading, transportation, dealerships for the past 24 years. We are not new to this market. It's on the basis of years of goodwill that we have earned in this market led us to think to expand in this sector.

Many real estate initiatives are designed to get the immediate job 'of pleasing the customer done. But our commercial property consultants deliver strategies that take a long- term view. When real estate decisions align with your personal objectives and organizations broader business and financial objectives, it's only natural that expectations are soon surpassed. Our smart and innovative advice helps you gain a competitive edge or advantage and win senior management support for your real estate activities, the successful strategies typically pay for their development costs, many times over and real estate savings of 10–15% are not unheard of.

Whether you are an investor, developer, property company or public entity, that's the way we always go to work for you.

The management's quest for exceptional growth is witnessed in its choice of strategic locations. Location, design and quality are the core differentiators of all our projects, giving us a strong competitive advantage vis-à-vis other available properties.

Could you please tell us that what inspired your projects most?
We have always believed that the customer is our best friend, philosopher and guide. Most of our projects have been inspired by the demand that our customers place before us. When we are repeatedly asked for a particular product, we start looking for ways to fulfill our customers' demands. The projects are conceived and executed with the objective of meeting our customer's level of satisfaction.

What is the state of the housing market in Patna i.e. demand vs. supply of housing units?
Due to various reasons growth and development in Bihar came to an almost stand-still in the past 14-15 years. Virtually nothing was being done in the fields of infrastructure, industry, business, investment and real estate.

However, in today's changed scenario the market is reacting proactively. With a surge in activity in all the important sectors the avenues for growth are everywhere. The same can be said of the housing sector. The desire to own a house is one of the three basic desires of everyman. Therefore, the sector has seen a sudden surge in demand. Numbers of options are being offered today to the customer means there is something for everyone and as a result of this the response is tremendous. As of now, the rates are slightly high due to the gap in demand and supply.

Is the current growth sustainable?
There is no looking back from here as lot can be done more in this sector. So, if we think in the near future there is a boom that we are in the midst of. Also, when we are talking about Bihar, there are two vital things that have to be kept in mind. One, the per capita land here is pretty low and secondly, the cities here are yet to adopt the concept of satellite townships. This will result in a demand for multi-storied constructions, development of entire townships. Therefore, it can be said that we are looking ahead at consistent growth in the real estate sector.

What are the typical buyer profiles of homes in the State Capital?
As I have mentioned earlier, there is a dearth in the housing industry at all levels. There are people wanting to buy houses to stay in, to rent out for some extra income, or to purely invest in for sale at a later date.

There had been mass exodus of human resource from the state to various parts of the country and world. Now, in this changed climate, with new employment opportunities coming up and people feeling safe, we are witnessing a return of the work force. Therefore, when we talk about homes, the buyer is an old resident in search of his own home, the returnee want to lay down his roots and people who are currently working across the world but intend to come back home on retirement.

This was one section of buyers; the other section is people who use real estate as an investment tool. With an increase in awareness about returns in the real estate sector people are increasingly looking at this sector for investments depending upon their pockets. This in itself is a very substantial pocket.

Would you advise buy-to-let investors or institutions to buy units in Patna for the sole purpose of renting out the properties?
There has been an overall increase in activities in all sectors. This has led to more companies increasing their business activities in the state. This immediately translates into demand for both commercial and residential property. As there was not much happening the infrastructure is not yet fully competent to handle all the demand. Also, the new entrants want to test the waters here for some time before investing in infrastructure so, the obvious solution is to rent out property for their requirements. This has insured that the rents have gone up considerably whereas the rents in well connected and centrally located areas have sky-rocketed. So, this is also a smart move for individuals or companies looking for opportunity in this field.

Does your company intend to diversify in other part of the country?
We have always believed and worked towards organized growth and expansion. As per Chanakya's saying "Sustainable growth can only be achieved by organized expansion". As pointed out earlier, the company is still in its nascent stage. Adding to that is the fact that we are taking on big projects that require a period of at least 2-3 years before delivery. Therefore, we have decided that however, tempting the lure of investments outside maybe, we will, take them on only in our second stage of expansion. So, for now, we are concentrating on Bihar.
NBM&CW February 2013
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