Mumbai: India’s largest spirit-maker United Spirits Ltd (USL) is set to invite bids for its sea-facing mansion called Niladri on Napean Sea road in South Mumbai, according to two people aware of the development.
Former chairman and promoter Vijay Mallya has often used the marque property, priced at around Rs300 crore, as his Mumbai residence.
The company, now owned by British liquor firm Diageo Plc, will start the process of selling the 16,000 sq. ft property where the liquor baron threw parties and Kingfisher Calendar lunches, said the first of the two people mentioned above.
“Niladri will be open for bidding from next week. The property is likely to fetch around Rs280 crore to Rs300 crore," said the person.
Used as a company guest house, Mallya and other senior managers of the company have also lived in the swanky mansion which comes with a swimming pool, private lawns and a deck inside the complex, this person said.
“It would be a clean transaction as the property is not under any litigation or any issue with the lenders," said the second person.
The property is one of 13 real estate assets that USL has decided to sell after Mallya failed to buy them back last year. Post his resignation as chairman of United Spirits in 2016, the embattled liquor baron entered into an agreement allowing him to acquire up to 13 domestic properties from USL within a limited time frame. In an email response seeking confirmation on the development, a Diageo India spokesperson said: “The sale of these properties is in line with our plans to monetize non-core assets."
However, the company refused to provide information on any particular property transaction.
Property consultants JLL India, transaction advisers to the deal, declined to comment on the sale.
“The property (Niladri) would definitely generate a lot of interest among industrialists, corporates and high networth individuals. The location would add more premium considering it is a very high-end market. Such properties are rare to find," said Pankaj Kapoor, managing director, Liases Foras, a real estate advisory firm.
Properties in and around Napean Sea Road, among the most exclusive neighbourhoods in Mumbai, typically sell between Rs75,000 and Rs1.5 lakh per sq. ft, Kapoor said.
USL is also in the process of selling four floors of its iconic UB Towers spread across 31,000 sq. ft for around Rs100 crore. Located in Bengaluru, this iconic tower has been used as the company’s headquarter. However, Mallya’s other properties, such as Kingfisher House in Mumbai and Kingfisher Villa in Goa, haven’t been easy to sell.
Kingfisher Villa finally went for Rs73 crore after three failed attempts, and the corporate office of the defunct Kingfisher Airlines is yet to find a taker.
Mallya left for the UK, his adopted home, soon after being declared a wilful defaulter by banks in 2016 for his failure to repay debts worth around Rs9,000 crore related to Kingfisher Airlines.