Sunit Sachar Discusses The Relevance of Tried and Tested Techniques of Business in Real Estate with Onkar Pandey of 4PS B&M

Lack of significant differentiation is being considered as a serious issue in the realty sector. How do you tackle it as new competition keeps coming in borrows concepts and even takes these concepts to a new level?
We understand the power of the customer. An organisation that does not respond to the customers’ needs & demands tends to see diminishing trends in brand popularity and product acceptability. Keeping the above in view, we bring to the customers value for the money projects at excellent locations and assure them complete transparency in dealings. As far as the marketing aspect is concerned, we have always practiced tried and tested methods which involve knowing the pulse of the market before settling the price of new launches. At the same time, all our projects enjoy also exceptional locations and superior specifications.

Real estate has traditionally been a luxury but has proliferated to multiple segments in the past few years. You are a prominent player in the affordable segment. What is the mantra for success in this market?
There has always been a latent potential existing in the market for the lower and middle income group, which was primarily untapped. This was because if one wants a quality home at a good location, then the price of the product was out of the reach of this group. Right from the start, we are known for these virtues. We at Parsvnath Developers have always designed projects, which are known to be very efficient in terms of location and pricing; apart from having an edge over others in terms of architecture and design. Our climb on the popularity ladder has been because of the vast acceptability of our projects.

The symbolism of luxury seems to be overused in real estate positioning nowadays. Is this creating confusion in the market? How do you separate your offerings for various segments in the mind of the customer?
Indeed, the word luxury has been used extensively and without any discretion. Without any malice to anyone, the word luxury has been rather misused for ordinary specifications and designs by many. Moreover, luxury has different connotations for different people. For a lower middle class household, vitrified tile flooring could be a luxury. For a middle income group, wooden flooring could be a luxury and for a higher income group Italian marble floors could be a luxury. Over a period of time, one has noticed that developers have used different USPs. Initially they use to emphasise only on location, followed by location and specifications. This has got further fine tuned with the use of amenities and facilities in the project. This was followed by offerings like sports academies and outdoor games facilities in the project. Over a period of time we have introduced features in our projects according to the aspirations of the clients and the practical possibilities to deliver the same.

Real estate is typically a high involvement category where numerous brands are currently jostling for space. How do you seek to break through the media clutter?
The personal selling tools and media strategy varies from project to project and it depends on total project value. For example if it is the first project in a particular region and it a unique project for that region or enjoys premium pricing, this will require more media exposure. We invariably use print and outdoor, but depending on the project, one can consider radio or TV as well.

How far has the Indian market moved vis-à-vis the township concept? How do we need to view townships?
Currently the townships, which are being developed in India have progressed from infancy stage to being at an acceptable level, although the investments have actually come more from the investors than the actual users as far as these townships are concerned.

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Source : IIPM Editorial, 2011.

An Initiative of IIPM, Malay Chaudhuri and Arindam chaudhuri (Renowned Management Guru and Economist).

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