India is expected to attract $75-­$80 million of private equity (PE) investment in the retail real estate sector in 2016, says property consultant ‎Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL).

Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflow into retail real-estate trading has increased between October 2014 and September 2015 to $70.75 million, the property consultant said in its latest report released on Thursday. The anticipation over private equity inflows comes on the back of economic stability coupled with liberalisation of the FDI policy and an improvement in the consumer sentiment.

This is expected to help global brands witness conducive environment for investment into Indian retail as well as retail real estate sectors. The country is also witnessing a steady rise in shoppers' desire to consume foreign brands due to increased brand awareness. The entry of more and more global brands like H&M, Wendy's brands will result in an increasing need for development of world­-class malls, having superlative designs and ambience, says Anuj Puri, chairman and country head, JLL India. "This will lead to emergence of stronger retail real estate players, who may manage to get private equity (PE) investment in the coming years." JLL said the PE investments were largely confined to a few retail players in India. In 2015, PE investment into retail properties was $39 million. 

PE investments  may also go into select mall investments, especially in under-­represented markets or for buyout of mature assets, the report said.