All of Bengaluru’s advertising, corporate and media fraternity look forward to the 31st January when they get to hear business leaders talk about their life and career. There have been stalwarts from old businesses and disruptors from new. The one thing in common is that they have compelling stories to tell. An equal draw are the cocktails and dinner hosted by the dapper Bunty & Sadiqa Peerbhoy, with their son Akshar and his wife Nishita. All of Bengaluru’s cognoscenti fraternises on this evening.
On the last day of the first month of this year, January, The 37th Ayaz Peerbhoy Memorial Lecture was delivered by the second richest real estate tycoon in India, Jitu Virwani. Lecture actually would be a misnomer as the billionaire made a simple speech, with no technical props or presentations. It almost seemed like a fireside chat with its intimacy.
His honesty was rare and bold as he talked about how he was always driven by the need to make a profit be it beating older members at snooker at his local club or selling pistas to his mother’s friends. The same urge compels him to flip properties even after developing 40 million square feet across the world.
His speech was not from a script, as he traced his epic journey up the value chain, the hard times when the real estate market crashed, the art of negotiating, the good times, following your gut instinct, putting your head down and working towards your goal.
His tips for those looking at taking the plunge into entrepreneurship were:
Spots the dangers around the bend
Stay committed to what you want to do
We all have two families that support us - one at work and one at home; ensure your support wagon is strong.
Don’t invest in something you don’t believe in, especially if it cannot turn around. Follow your gut instinct.
Be honest in what you do
The lecture series was started in 1980 by MAA Group Chairman Bunty Peerbhoy in memory of his late father Ayaz Peerbhoy, one of the stalwarts in the advertising world in Mumbai.