Legends of Housing


As the old gives way to the new, Ansal API too is undergoing a quiet transformation. It is being scripted by Sushil Ansal who has delegated a significant role to his able son Pranav Ansal for taking Ansal API to more glorious heights
By Yogesh Sood
Ansal Properties and Infrastructures (Ansal API) was founded by Sushil Ansal with Late Lala Chiranjiv Lal Ansal in 1967. The family business developed into a major organization in the real estate industry and changed the whole definition of lifestyle of the people. Ansal Builders has transformed the lifestyles of people while being firm on their foundations of providing excellence with commitment and teamwork. Ansal Constructions has diversified its scope to building not only homes and offices, but also places of entertainment, hotels, shopping malls and various educational institutions.

In a league of its own, with many precious years of experience behind its back and a phenomenal success story, Ansal API today is a force to reckon with. As is normally witnessed, people always want their son or daughter to replicate; to pass on to the next generation the skills, the abilities, the intelligence, understanding and the values of the past generation! Needless to say, children are expected to be like parents especially in the business clans where the experienced minds attempt to drive the youth in their direction.

Moreover, if the new generation has to face the future with greater zest and self-confidence, one must educate them to be original and competent to take the world in their own stride. Armed with degrees from International and Indian Universities with a firm ground beneath his feet, Pranav Ansal today stands tall and achieves success on his own merit. Yes, he admires his stalwart father Sushil Ansal who is fondly called Sushilji by his peers; he seeks guidance and inspiration from him. He is beaming with ideas that carry an unmistakable sense of individuality and distinctiveness. Pranav has consolidated the firm’s position, reputation and made it run professionally with modern management culture. The father-son-duo, through their unique discerning abilities and looking at outperforming their own best, are looking at every possibility.

It has not been no fairytale encounter that Sushil Ansal, Chairman Ansal API, had with the Indian real estate. Headed by a visionary like him, Ansal API has a rightful distinction of taking real estate from nowhere to perhaps the greatest status that any corporate would like to enjoy. He is the one who never fails to stand up for the cause of real estate industry. With an unrelenting determination and profound understanding of the dynamics of the real estate business, he continues to remain impressive today.

Perhaps his father Chiranjiv Lal Ansal did not want his son to follow his footsteps and join the contracting business. He wanted his son, an economics graduate from St. Stephens College, to prepare for the civil services. But 21-year-old Sushil Ansal had made-up his mind to listen to his heart and passionately got into real estate way back in 1960s. What took shape in years that followed is a story of empire building. Ansal API was established as a result of a dream, shared by its visionary founder. The dream was to radically improve the lifestyle standards of the citizens by building world class real estate solutions.

The Realty Mogul 

However, a humble Sushil Ansal says that I haven’t achieved anything much in life; I only truthfully pursued what my heart directed me to do. The man responsible for changing the skyline of Delhi and converting Connaught Place into the contemporary business hub way back in 1970s speaks volumes about the vision of the man. “When we built the first high-rise building Akashdeep, there were a lot of apprehensions about it. When we built our first residential apartment, Akashdeep, initially it would take 15 days for us to sell a flat. Things have changed now because of the goodwill that we have earned over the years”, says a beaming Sushil, recounting nostalgically. “At that point of time we have to convince the government a great deal when we built our first shopping mall. Same goes true for the multiplexes too,” says Sushil.

He is proud of the long- term perspective of the business that he took. His advice to all the future entrepreneurs entering the realty industry is that: have a long-term perspective, be honest with your staff, vendors and the customers. When asked about the four decade long career and the guiding force behind his tremendous feat, he says, “It is his commitment and delivery. Once I commit something, I stick to it. Also I am frank and I depend on my hunches more than practical things.

The Stephenian, who shared his college bench with bureaucrats like N. K. Singh and Mani Shankar Aiyar, is an early riser and a fitness freak. His love for his family is evident from the fact that a painting hanging in his office has been painted by his granddaughter Anushka. Apart from his work, Sushilji is passionate about reading, travelling and golf. He loves reading non-fiction and self-help books. He is a lover of bhajans and Gayatri Mantra is very close to his heart.

From its inception till today—when his son Pranav Ansal, the scion of his mighty empire Ansal API, is carrying on the legacy—he had been in the thick of things and stayed along and did everything that needed to be done for promoting the cause of the industry in the sub-continent. The father- son-duo with their combined vision has ensured that the company sets new benchmarks of success and creation. After four decades of spectacular growth, Ansal API is at a stage where the company has acquired immense experience, consolidated itself and established assets—physical and intellectual and at the same time retained youthful energy and zeal. With foundations entrenched in the solid bedrock of technical expertise and financial stability, its pinnacles are rising new heights with foresight and innovations for future requirements of resurgent India. Today the company is ISO; 2001: 2000 and has been building lifestyles since 1967.

Stepping Stones 

Established as a family run business, Ansal API today is among the top realty and infrastructure companies in India. It currently operates in business verticals, ranging from integrated townships, group housing, shopping complexes, hotels, SEZs, IT Parks and Infrastructure and Utility services. The company with a net of over Rs. 1,639.7 crore and a turnover of over Rs. 1,290.6 crore, has land reserves of 9,343 acres at present. This includes land for residential, commercial, retail, hospitality and integrated township projects. The Group expects to acquire 6-8 million sq. ft. in FY ’12. Ansal API profit after tax stands at Rs. 101.7 crore now.

Initiative for providing quality housing seems to be the clear thrust of the company. According to the Planning Commission, there is a shortage of 25 million homes in India and it will take about 15-20 years for this demand- supply gap to be filled. Looking into this aspect, Sushil Ansal says, “Housing will remain our main focus, along with the government, we are trying to decongest the metros and develop tier II and tier III cities. Our aim is to spruce up the lifestyle in these cities—from schools to medical facilities to multiplexes and playgrounds, basically to create a composite lifestyle.”

February 2012

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