Pune set to turn Indias mall capital in two years

Written by Mona Mehta | Mumbai, Mar 28 | Updated: Mar 30 2008, 05:09am hrs
In about two years from now, IT hub Pune is set to turn into the hottest destination for malls with at least 20 branded ventures readying to kickstart operations, according to experts.

A recent data showcased by Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj (JLLM) said that Kakade Ciy Mall with 6 lakh sq ft built-up area (BUA) will come up in Maharshi Karve Road in the third quarter of 2010 apart from Sudev Axis Mall with 3.5 lakh sq ft BUA in Wakhewadi by 2010.

While Centre Port Mall with 1.75 lakh BUA will be set up in Ganeshkhind Road in the second quarter of 2008, Hermes Waves with 1 lakh BUA will come up in Kalyani Nagar in 2008. Jewel Square with 1 lakh BUA will be opened in Koregaon Road in 2008, whereas, Racold Property with 5.50 lakh sq ft BUA will be set up in Pimpri in 2009. Fun N Fair Mall in Kalyaninagar with 6 lakh sq ft too will come up in first quarter of 2009. Shubhranshu Pani, managing director (retail), Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj, said, From pensioners paradise to IT boomtown, Punes progress story is being rewritten every year. The citys latest avatar of a shopping Mecca is unfolding itself in a sweeping signature of chrome glitz and tinted sheet glass. The new breed of IT-driven Puneites, with pockets overflowing, is spoiled for choices on where to blow the loot.

Pani added that Kalyani Nagar, the most strategic slice of Punes gilded real estate pie, is the nexus of the citys mall-crawling mania. Along Senapati Bapat Marg behind Law College Road, the same dynamics that kicked Kalyani Nagar from kirana-store obscurity to retail superstardom are rearing their head. Baner, Bavdhan, Wakad are picking up where Aundh was forced to leave off when it finally bit off more than it could chew. Ganeshkhind Road, Koregan Road, Maharishi Karve Road, Wakdewadi, Fatima Nagar, Pimpri, Hadapsar, Nagar Road, Satara Road also have new malls in the pipeline.

Developers are building malls in catchments with availability of land being the only criterion actual demand by end-users does not seem to be a significant factor. This has resulted in a mismatch of supply, wherein malls exist where demand does not - and vice versa. We are likely to see an oversupply in Pune. In this scenario, a typical neighbourhood will have as much as six different supermarket brands. This will lead to pressure on sales and result in lowered margins, sums up Pani.