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I have received many requests for information regarding key people or companies that will help foreigners and locals invest in India. I have compiled my own list to better help your investment goals. By way of disclosure, none of these companies or people has compensated The India Street in any way. 1. India Title Insurance: Despite what you may read, there are companies offering title insurance in India. To be clear, the companies offering the title insurance for real estate in India are simply hiring local attorneys to do the research and due diligence investors are doing now. However, the rates are reasonable and the title insurers are experts at determining clear title and finding red flags which the investor may miss. Contacts: LandAmerica International Services Phone: +1-212-220-7002 firstname.lastname@example.org 140 East 45th Street, 22nd Floor New York, NY 10017 www.landam.com/international First American Title Insurance Company National Commercial Services 633 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017 www.firstam.com/ncs | NYSE:FAF Tel: 212.850.0618 Fax: 212.331.1476 Email: email@example.com 2. Attorneys While attorneys are a necessary evil in India and throughout the world, there are some legal professionals that add value beyond legal advice. We recommend you find an attorney in India that is knowledgeable about Real Estate, has many local connections, and will refer you to leading industry practitioners. In effect, a business partner. Kusuma Advocates +91 (0) 80 222 66383 No. 101 "Eden Park" Opposite Prestige UB City 20 Vittal Mallya Road Bangalore 560001 India
Ronald G. Weitz Partner Tel: 1.214.969.2988 Fax: 1.214.969.5100 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 2727 North Harwood Street Dallas, Texas 75201-1515 Andrews Kurth LLP 1701 Pennsylvania Av, NW, #300 Washington, DC 20006 +1(202) 662-2756 3. Real Estate Brokers and Advisory Firms As with attorneys, brokers are usually necessary to complete a transaction whether they represent the seller or buyer side. The best deals are found prior to a broker taking the listing, but there are the rare brokers that will provide “tips” to investors in order to secure a pre-listing deal. You will not simply call a broker and expect decent leads, you will have to put the energy in to establish rapport. Remember, these brokers are inundated with requests and try only to work with seasoned professionals or those with promise. Ram T. Chandnani CB Richard Ellis South Asia Pvt.Ltd | Head South India Operations 3rd Floor, The Hulkul 81/37 Lavelle Road Bangalore 560001, India T 91 80 4112 1240 email@example.com | www.cbreindia Anuj Bindal Manager – Global Corporate Services DTZ # 2A Paharpur Software Technology Park | 21 Nehru Place New Delhi 110 019, INDIA T +91 11 2620 7108 Mr Karun Varma Associate Director firstname.lastname@example.org Mobile : +91 98866 05001 4. India Business Associations The best India businesses associations allow members to network with one another in a professional environment. They are also committed to affect real and positive change in the relationship between India and the rest of the world. One of the best
organizations is the USIBC which is partly responsible for the US/India civilian nuclear exchange program, Indian mangoes exported to the US, and Harley Davidson’s new foray in India. Ron Somers President United States India Business Council (USIBC) 1615 H Street NW Washington, District of Columbia 20062-200 email@example.com http://www.usibc.com 5. Cheap Phone calls while in India Never use a US based cell phone in India. All of the US based mobile phone service providers seem to have international price immunity because they can charge 2 rupees ($.05) a minute in the US while charging 120 rupees ($3.00) a minute in India. I have seen bills reach $1700 by way of using the mobile in India which would have cost $20 in the US. Buying a local SIM chip doesn’t seem to help either. SIM Chips vary in affordability and one has little control over the amount the carrier charges. A good but still not convenient option is to buy a local calling card. The rates are low, but finding a decent landline in India outside the hotels is difficult. The Best option that I have found is Skype. I use a Skype cordless phone with my laptop so that I can walk around the room/office (up to 100 feet). A little USB attachment is plugged into the USB port and viola, it works fantastic. The cost of the Skype service is low ($.02) to the US (free to other Skype users), it’s convenient and allows one to make calls in any WIFI zone. 6. Good Tax Strategists Since India is a relatively young country in terms of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and foreign investors, special care is needed in this area to protect your gains. Foreign investors can end up paying three times as much in taxes if a carefully planned tax strategy is not implemented. Most FDI compliant funds use Mauritius as their exit route given the long history and special tax breaks between the two countries. However, new routes through Singapore are proving to be easier and safer. ERNST & YOUNG Global Tax Advisory Services Direct Tax www.ey.com/india +91-44-2431-1440 Yogesh Singla Tata Consultancy Services
Mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org cell: +91 9821360677 Website: http://www.tcs.com 7. Auditors and Risk Management Today’s leading internal audit organizations are no longer limited to hazard avoidance and compliance. They need to demonstrate their knowledge of risk management and business process improvement in India, which is a characteristic of a consultant rather than a classical internal auditor. Furthermore, the better internal auditors provide value added support to managements across all areas of investment and real estate operations. While the fees are high, the value in risk mitigation is extremely high. Satyavati Berera Tel:+91 (11) 41350503 Leader- Internal Audit Services 11 A Vishnu Dighambar Marg New Delhi –110 002 Telephone  (11) 2323-2916/2321-0891-99/ 41150000 Fax:  (11) 2321-0594/96 8. Investor Friendly Banks A bank that understands how India works, is willing to make large loans and has the contacts to help their borrowers achieve financial success in India is crucial. We have highlighted two below that we have found to be investor friendly and eager to help finance real estate deals. As with the real estate advisors above, it’s important to forge a good relationship with the local executives. Business Today and Euromoney’s 2006 “best bank”, HDFC has been growing at about 30% a year and has a 29 year track record of working with developers. Forbes has also listed them as one of Asia’s Best 50 companies. Abhay Aima, Head - Equities and Private Banking HDFC Bank House Senapati Bapat Marg Lower Parel Mumbai, 400 013 India IND +1-212-8822888 (Phone) http://www.hdfcbank.com Most people do not realize how long Citibank (CitiGroup) has been in India (103 years). I can not explain the longevity of an American company in British India then Socialist India, but if they have been able to last over a century through India’s trial and tribulations, they must have either been masochists or extremely adaptable. I tend to believe the latter and recommend you work with Citibank. Rohini Malkani +91-22- 6631-9876 email@example.com
Bakhtawar, Nariman Point, Mumbai 400-021.
9. Quality Developers/Construction Companies I can relate many stories about foreign investors being burned in India. What is not typically known is the amount of unethical behavior by developers and construction companies as it relates to Multi National Corporation (MNC) tenants. For example, large deposits are taken by developers when a tenant signs on for a commercial lease. That deposit guarantees the contract between developer and tenant. What we have found and you need to avoid, are developers that do not follow contracts and worse hold the tenant in limbo (by stopping work or tenant improvements) until the tenant agrees to the developer’s new (and thus more lucrative for the developer) terms. We have also seen developers finish the work but not obtain a building occupancy permit. With out an occupancy permit, the tenant cannot legally move in. As one MNC tenant related to The India Street, “the developer held us hostage until we paid them an extra fee for ‘services’ related to construction.” Turn to organizations like CREDAI (Confederation of Real Estate Developer's Associations of India) that promote ethical codes. They will also provide their member track records which will allow you greater visibility into your due diligence. Pradip kumar Chopra Executive Board-CREDAI Tel +91 033)24757896/6406 firstname.lastname@example.org www.credai.com Also, look for foreign developers like Ascendas (Singapore) and The WIRE Group (Singapore and The United States) who are used to operating in transparent environments. They also are more likely to produce a quality product as they have built some true International Class A buildings both outside and inside India. 10. Mezzanine Debt Providers Because of the current high interest rate environment in India, Mezzanine debt has never been more important to further leverage your funds to achieve higher returns. While relatively new in India, the use of mezzanine debt can sometimes attract domestic financing to your projects. Asia Mezzanine Capital Advisers Limited (sponsored by the Prudential Capital Insurance Company) Alexandra House 12 th Floor 16-20 Chater Road Hong Kong, SAR, China
Telephone: 852-3104-2570 Fax: 852-3104-2915 E-mail: email@example.com
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