Prudential Real Estate Investors (PREI) has partnered with Beekman Helix India Partners to invest in real estate in India through a private equity platform on behalf of institutional clients.

The joint venture will operate as Pramerica BHI India and will be based in Gurgaon, near New Delhi, the Indian capital. Initially, the venture will invest in middle-income residential projects and office parks. Other sectors are also likely to be considered.

“This strategy provides our investors with the opportunity to capitalize on the dynamic growth in India that has created demand for institutional quality real estate,” says Victoria Shigehira Sharpe, CEO of PREI Asia.

The joint venture hopes to capitalize on a growing Indian population as well as growth in the Indian economy. Population trends indicate that India will be the most populous country in the world, overtaking China, by 2030. PREI estimates that the Indian economy could grow as much as 8% this year.

India is also becoming more urbanized, creating more demand for real estate. Citing a McKinsey Global Institute study, PREI says that about 40% of India’s population will live in urban areas by 2020. Currently, roughly 30% of the Indian population lives in urban areas.

The Parsippany, N.J.-based Prudential affiliate forged a relationship with Beekman, a private real estate investor based in the United States, in 2006 to pursue real estate investment opportunities in India. So far, the two have deployed $220 million in 11 equity investment opportunities across seven Indian markets, Prudential reports. These markets include the cities of Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, as well as others in the Punjab region and the National Capital Region.

Shekar Narasimhan, CEO of BHI, notes, “We have worked closely with top developers and landowners throughout India and we look forward to building this venture into a premier investment manager to serve foreign investors. We have built a team on the ground that can patiently source opportunities and actively manage them through fruition.”

Manish Parwani, CEO of the joint venture and senior portfolio manager, says, “India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and Pramerica BHI India is well-positioned to take advantage of the growth in quality commercial real estate both in the short- and long-term.”