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US President Donald Trump's business interest in India is expected to go beyond real estate to hospitality. Though much of it is likely to fructify after Trump completes his current term.
India was the second-biggest market for Trump in terms of number of projects, according to his son Donald Trump Jr, who was in Kolkata on Wednesday as a part of road show to sell Trump Tower, a luxury real estate project.
“We have a hotel portfolio and a golf portfolio, so we can expand away from commercial and residential. In India, eventually, we will have some resorts, and look at the hospitality sector - all understanding that this will be done later on, as we cannot do it now… Although in three to seven years, given the dynamic nature of the market, a lot of things can change,” said Trump Jr.
The Trump Organization had been looking at 12-15 new projects in India, but all of them are on hold due to self-imposed restrictions on expansion till Trump remains president. “We are not able to do new deals now - which is a shame for me… It is difficult to step back when we have the opportunity. We look forward to coming back here,” said Trump Jr.
Built with a licensing agreement with Indian realty partners, Trump Tower has sold 73 per cent of the units in Kolkata, priced at Rs 40-60 million per unit.
The largest Trump Tower in India is in Gurugram. “Some of the emerging markets are starved of luxury. There are wealthy buyers, and the best of the best in a place like New York is not the same as the best of the best here. Through partnerships, we have been able to deliver that best of the best here.”
In Mumbai, a 78-storey Trump-branded tower with 400 residences is scheduled to be completed next year. In Pune, where a fourth Trump-branded project has been built has 46 single-floor 5BHK residences, starting at Rs 150 million.
“When I started looking at India, I learnt things the hard way, which is the best way. Having made those mistakes, I figured out the right partnerships before the reforms came,” said Trump Jr.