Realty major DLF is expecting to make its housing business debt free by March next year as it is planning to utilise the cash flow from sales of completed inventories worth around Rs 14,000 cr to fund new projects, said its CEO Rajeev Talwar. He further added that the company would sell flats only after completion of the project and there would be no pre-launch sales.
"We are working towards that," Talwar said when asked about the company's target to become zero debt in housing business by March 2019.
The DLF CEO, who is set to take over as the new president of industry chamber PHDCCI next month, said the debt of housing business has already been reduced with infusion of funds in the company from promoters.
In December last year, the promoters sold their 40 per cent stake in the rental arm DLF Cyber City Developers Ltd (DCCDL) for around Rs 12,000 cr.
This deal included sale of 33.34 per cent stake in DCCDL to GIC for about Rs 9,000 cr and buyback of remaining shares worth about Rs 3,000 cr by DCCDL.
DLF has 66.66 per cent stake while Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC has 33.34 per cent shareholding in the DCCDL, which currently holds about 27 mln sqft of rent-yielding commercial assets, largely in Gurugram, with annual rental income of about Rs 2,400 cr.
There are many leased commercial assets with the parent company as well.
"There are two parts of DLF, one is the development arm the other is the commercial arm, the leasing portion. The leasing portfolio we have got a good partner GIC. We have got a good rental income which is Rs 3,000 cr plus so therefore it becomes very easy to reduce debt," Talwar said.
The debt of the development or housing business would reduce further, he added.
"The surplus which we have of inventory which is really another Rs 14,000-15,000 cr worth that will fund our future construction," Talwar said.
At the end of first quarter of this fiscal, DLF's debt stood at Rs 7,120 cr.
The company plans to reduce this debt through further infusion of Rs 2,250 cr from promoters in the next 18 months and proposed qualified institutional placement of shares of around Rs 4,000 cr.
Moreover, the DLF-GIC JV had a net debt of Rs 16,162 cr, of which Rs 14,570 cr loans are through lease rental discounting (LRD) against its rental receipts from leased commercial properties, according to a company presentation.