Explained: Owners Fund exit investing in Mumbai’s housing project and its implications

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The government-backed Special Window for Affordable and Medium Income Housing (SWAMIH) Fund has announced a complete exit from its investments made in the CCI Rivali Park Wintergreen project in Mumbai. The fund was set up last year to provide last mile funding for stalled affordable housing projects.

According to the Finance Ministry, Swamy has approved 95 projects worth over Rs 9,500 crore, which will complete over 57,700 houses. It has already completed over 1,500 houses in seven projects and is on track to complete at least 10,000 houses every year, the government said on Thursday.

Which project gave exit?

Located in Borivali, Mumbai, the Rivali Park residential project was the first to receive funding under the Swamih Fund, which was announced in November 2019 with an estimated fund size of Rs 25,000 crore. The fund was announced under a government scheme to support stalled projects. Managed by SBICap Ventures, it gave possession of completed flats to homeowners in the Rivali Park project in May. Spread over seven acres and consisting of 708 units of various configurations, the project has been developed by CCI Projects Pvt Ltd.

What could be its effect?

A successful exit will encourage the fund and other private investors to take risks for projects that are stuck due to paucity of funds. This will help unlock liquidity in the real estate sector and give a boost to key industries like cement and steel. The liquidity crunch and the cash strap situation that the real estate sector faced in 2019 made things difficult, prompting the government to launch the scheme. The Finance Ministry said Swamy Fund has one of the largest domestic real estate private equity teams focused solely on financing and monitoring stressed housing projects.

“The construction focus ensures that the SWAMIH sites have the highest labor density with around 16000+ labourers. It has worked through COVID times approving a new project almost every week since its inception,” it said. The money gained through this investment can now be used to support other projects.

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