Towering ambition

How a no-land-bank strategy and premium positioning helped Oberoi Realty race ahead

Tushar Mane

When other 16-year-old boys were busy chasing girls or playing cricket, Vikas Oberoi would be at the dining table, drawing plans for buildings. In the evening, the same table would become a boardroom, with Oberoi and his father Ranvir Oberoi discussing the family construction business for hours on end. Oberoi Constructions was then a small builder, with just two residential buildings to its name. More than a decade later, when Vikas Oberoi took over as managing director in 1998, he dusted off those drawings, renamed the company Oberoi Realty and set off to transform both, Mumbai’s landscape and the company’s fortunes. His first project was in Kandivili, a Mumbai suburb. “It was exactly the kind of project I had dreamed of building — there was a swimming pool, gym… everything that I wanted in a residential development,” says Oberoi, now 43 years old.