Kushal Pal Singh: A Genius Who Took DLF From Rs 26 lakh To Billion Dollars In Valuation

Success story of Kushal Pal Singh

Sometimes chance encounters are enough to shape fortunes, careers, lives and trajectories in ways that people don’t realize then. Something like this happened to the man himself, Kushal Pal Singh, who was not born with a golden spoon in his mouth but successfully built India’s most valued real estate company, DLF with his impeccable efforts and legendary ideas. 

Here check out KP Singh’s full success story and his struggles in life.

Early days

The man who is now known as the one who transformed the barren landscape of Gurgaon into India’s No. 1 corporate hub was once a soldier. Only a few people know this fact that KP Singh was an Indian army officer, commissioned into the 9th Deccan Horse Cavalry Regiment. Born in 1931 in Uttar Pradesh, Singh did his graduation in Science from Meerut College after which he moved to the United Kingdom to pursue Aeronautical Engineering. Soon when he completed the course, Singh joined the Army. 

However, he left the position in 1961 to join Delhi Land & Finance (DLF) Limited. At that time, the company was nothing but a small setup by KP Singh’s father-in-law. So, how did DLF manage to become a household name in the industry of real estate? The answer lies in a chance encounter that changed KP Singh’s life massively. 

Story of a chance encounter with Rajiv Gandhi 

It is a legendary incident narrated by KP Singh himself several times. In the early 80s, Singh had a chance meeting with none other than former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Back then, Gandhi was the Congress General Secretary and one day his car suddenly broke down in the Gurgaon area. KP Singh helped him fix his jeep and when asked by Rajiv Gandhi as to what he was doing in that area, the business tycoon replied he was dreaming of a new city. Sharing his vision, KP Singh also told Rajiv Gandhi about how government laws were hindering him from building this millennium city. 

Impressed by Singh’s vision, Gandhi suggested him to share his idea at his office in New Delhi. Eventually, after several subsequent meetings everyone unanimously agreed that Gurgaon should be developed into a modern city with a sizable participation from the private sector.  Hence, DLF Ltd received its first license in April 1981, for the development of 39.34 acres of land in Gurgaon.  As a result, KP Singh revolutanized Gurgaon far beyond the expectation of other government officials, developing luxurious residential projects, shopping malls, commercial spaces galore and what not.

Kushal Pal Singh Joined The Billionaire Club 

While Kushal Pal Singh was the chairman of DLF, the company even launched its IPO in 2007 and raised about $2.24 billion, making it one of the largest initial public offerings (IPOs) in India. As a result, market capitalisation of the company also increased to $24.5 billion, paving the way for Singh and his family to become one of the richest clans in the world.  

In 2020, KP Singh retired as the DLF chairman and handed over the responsibilities of the country’s largest listed real estate firm to Rajiv, his son and heir.

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