Divergent views over land usage may end up splitting Godrej family

Mumbai, June 27 : Family dispute has cropped up in yet another Indian business conglomerate as the 122-year Godrej Group seems to be heading towards a split over difference of opinion regarding commercial development of a 1,000-acre land held by the family.

Group Chairman Adi Godrej and his brother Nadir Godrej are on one side of the turf, who want to commercially develop the landholding of Godrej (and) Boyce, while Jamshyd Godrej, the Chairman of the holding company and his son are opposed to the idea of "excessive development", media reports said.

The centre of discord is a 1,000-acre plot in Vikhroli, a suburb of Mumbai.

Sources said both the factions have reached out to their counsels to resolve the stalemate and rework the land holding pact.

Adi Godrej and Nadir Godrej, the Chairman of Godrej Agrovet have hired banker Uday Kotak and Cyril Shroff of Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas, while Jamshyd Godrej has hired veteran investment banker Nimesh Kampani of JM Financial and lawyer Zia Mody of AZB Partners.

While Godrej Properties, headed by Adi's son Pirojsha Godrej, aims to become a leader in Mumbai's realty market, Jamshyd Godrej has been known for being inclined toward environment conservation.

Jamshyd is on the boards of the World Resources Institute and was also named as one of the "richest green billionaires" by Forbes Magazine in 2012.

He is also the President of the World Wide Fund-India. In fact, Adi Godrej too was named among "richest green billionaires" by Forbes Magazine.

According to sources, the counsels from both sides are trying to understand the various opinions and details of the the assets owned by Godrej (and) Boyce.

As per the agreement with Godrej (and) Boyce, Godrej Properties pays 10-15 per cent revenue of the project to the land owner.

Godrej Properties was essentially formed not just to monetise the land holding but also the Godrej brand.

Pirojsha Godrej, Adi Godrej's son, is the current executive chairman of the company. Interestingly, after the news broke early this morning, shares of Godrej Properties surged and eventually closed 4.06 per cent or Rs 38.95 higher at Rs 999 per share on the National Stock Exchange.



Source: IANS