My Visit to International Finance Centre (IFC tower – world’s sixth tallest tower) as an MBA student?

Hi Puys,

Not every MBA student gets such a big opportunity. I was a lucky fellow
who landed upon the chance of visiting 35 well known projects spread across 6
major cities in Asia Pacific with prospects to interact with the most renowned
developers and investors involved in those projects. This was made possible
because of my institute RICS SBE. For those, who don’t know, I am pursuing an

Its initiative REACH is a studio program, organized
to  provide invaluable international
insights of real estate, infrastructure, construction, design, layouts, samples
and hands on experience in six different locations of five major countries
across the world.
The program provides for total
immersion in the selected cities and combines unique “hands-on”
workshops with academic and industry seminars, case studies and site visits.

this program, I went to 6 major cities of five different nations(Hong Kong,
Beijing and Shanghai in China, Singapore, Seoul in South Korea, Tokyo in Japan)
and visited almost 35 projects, mostly iconic projects i.e ICC and IFC Centers
in Hong Kong (tallest towers in Hong Kong), IFC and Tanjong Pagar Center in
Singapore, HLD tower in Shanghai, SOHO Business Center in Beijing, Parc 1 in
Lotte Business Center (tallest tower in Seoul, South Korea), Shinjuku- Nomura building and Roppongi Hills in Tokyo,
Japan. Apart from these I also visited different financial institutions such
as Morgan & Stanley, Mori Investments, HSBC etc and many top real estate

This program integrates theory and
practice with a strong on‐site
orientation and
proactive participation. Site visits and workshops investigate innovative, both
new and established buildings and developments that have challenged the
industry. Exploring economies and understanding latest trends in the market was
the main objective. It was an exhaustive exposure of the international market
in a span of 30 days. My passion for traveling only made it better for me.

This eye opening experience provided me
with invaluable global insights. I would like to share how I developed such
insights by quoting two of the sites I visited:

IFC Tower: Its an iconic tower
of Hong Kong, 6th tallest tower in the world. I did in depth
analysis about the project, starting from the need, financial analysis (how the
major financing was done), structural analysis (the method of construction
technology adopted), to the modeling, time frame, major tenants etc.

Roppongi Hills: Its basically
an integrated city located in the heart of Tokyo. It is a very interesting case
since it is a redevelopment project which was recently completed by a private
developer. In this, I got to learn how to manage different stakeholders, land
acquisition strategy adopted by the developer, construction techniques and its
unique design and architecture.

After visiting so many iconic buildings and structures I
realized how far we lag behind our Asian counterparts.  Here I would like to mention some of my

India in comparison
to other cities:

Outside cities are focusing more on
sustainability and thus quality of life.

New technologies and construction techniques are
being employed.

Government policies and framework are
transparent and thus support the overall improvement of the city.

Projects are completed well within the time

They focus and spend more on planning part. For
eg: In the very initial stages design consultants, green consultants are hired.
They also focus on stakeholder management and thus consider public realm.

Outside, developers do not build merely for
profits, they also have their reputation attached to it and thus want to
complete everything well within deadline with excellence.

They are doing ambitious projects, futuristic
and ultra-modern designs.

Infrastructure is very well organized and
managed by the government.

My Learnings:

  • I
    explored the latest technological trends in the industry expressed in a
    major city environment.
  • Developed
    insights into the structural dynamics of the key international centres in the
  • An
    understanding of the nature and characteristics of different market systems and corporate structures
    under different legal jurisdictions and their effect on urban environments.
  • It
    provided me the opportunity to meet largest property firms, business
    executives, senior property personnel and business professionals.
  • This
    learning enhances the basics of real estate, major global challenges and
    risk mitigation techniques.

I hope I can put my learnings from this
exposure to good use sometime soon in India. With the rapidly changing real
estate scenario in India, this doesn’t seem to be a distant opportunity!

Shashank Vashishta

MBA REUI (Investment & Finance)

2013-15 batch