Big League Bids For Fun Themes, As Kerala Cities Cry For Broom

Kochi, January 19: | Updated: Jan 20 2003, 05:30am hrs
Fun, shopping and sporting are waiting to rev up in Kerala cities, if the EoIs (expression of interest) and MoUs inked at GIM (Global Investor Meet), including major players like Mahindra and Mahindra and Spencer, get the State cabinet nod. However, what was glaring by absence were queues to the showcase of solid waste management.

For instance, while Mr Raghu Pillai, CEO, Spencer Group, estimates Rs 15,000 crore investment potential in retailing business in Kerala, projects for solid waste management in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and Kozhikode are yet to create a stir from the business community.

All that the Kerala urban development ministry's city solid waste management projects have been able to rope in is an EoI from a Bangalore-based firm. Geonomics BT, which has offered to set up solid waste management system in the entire State, has evinced that there is likely to be investment in the Rs 500-700 crore in the range.

Projects for townships, multiplexes and retailing chains, meanwhile, have grabbed bigger attention. Ahmedabad-based City Gold Entertainment Ltd signed an MoU for a Rs 75-crore project. Spencer and Co has signed an MoU for a Rs 20-crore chain of hypermarkets across the State.

The UAE government is likely to set up a market complex in Vadagara, Kozhikode and in setting up a family enertainment centre in Kochi.

Thanthonni Thuruthu, a maverick strip of land in Vembanad lake that got thrown out of the Goshree Development Authority fold of development, may get a new lease of life through the interest evinced by Worldlink Group. About eight groups, including Mahindra and Mahindra, have made EoIs for Rs 200-crore Aakkulam satellite township project in Thiruvananthapuram and Rs 100-crore Ecotownship project in Kochi.

Some of the other bidders are a JV of UAE-based Alka Contracting Company and Kerala-based SI Properties, Skyline Builders, Holiday Homes, UAE, Peeves Group and Poovar Island Resorts.