Immigration through Investment * Job Creation * Capital Infusion

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EB-5 Program Could Bring Investment, Jobs


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EB-5 attorney: We’ll ‘do a lot of projects here’


Posted: 6:15 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 on DaytonDailyNews.com
BY THOMAS GNAU - STAFF WRITER


Dayton — Developers talking about a new hotel in the Dayton area may tap assistance from high net-worth foreigners, the owner of a local manufacturer said Friday.
Albert Naggar, owner of Tipp City’s Process Equipment Co., is trying to generate interest in his new federally designated EB (Employment Based)-5 region, a 38-county area around Dayton where rich foreigners will be invited to invest in job-creating projects.

Naggar and his team held a private, introductory session on the investment tool Friday at the Dayton offices of accounting firm Brady Ware & Co.

The U.S. government makes available 10,000 EB-5 visas annually — just one percent of a typical annual allotment — to wealthy foreigners looking to move to America with their families. In return for investing in a business that creates at least 10 jobs, the immigrants get green cards and a path to permanent residence, if they seek that.

Larry Behar, an EB-5 and immigration attorney in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., told developers at the Brady Ware meeting that once an initial investment is approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, further investors are often approved much more quickly.

Naggar gave no other details about a possible new area hotel, other than saying discussions are in an early phase. Naggar, who lives in New York City, is confident EB-5 investments will create Dayton-area jobs.

Canada in mid-February cancelled its own investor-visa program, which will make U.S. EB-5s more valuable, Behar said.

“We’re going to do a lot of projects here,” Behar told listeners in a standing-room-only meeting room. He predicted that a year from Friday, this EB-5 region will be “the most dynamic in the state of Ohio.”

Naggar’s EB-5 region, which includes parts of Northern Kentucky and Southeastern Indiana, will take not less than $3 million investments. Favored projects will include hotels, restaurants, medical-focused businesses, manufacturing and more.

Eighty percent of investors come from China, often because investors there want to ensure their children are educated in the U.S., Behar said. Small investment returns are expected, but an initial EB-5 investment can often lead to further American investments, said Behar and Brady Ware principals. In many cases, their net worth is beyond $10 million, Behar said.


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Developers invited to learn more about EB-5 investment tool

Posted: 4:23 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014 on DaytonDailyNews.com
BY THOMAS GNAU – DDN STAFF WRITER

A little-known U.S. investment tool is being made available in Dayton and beyond. The federal “EB-5” program gives wealthy foreigners preferential visa treatment in exchange for U.S. investments that are expected to create jobs.

The owner of a Tipp City manufacturer recently won government approval to help arrange the investments in Ohio to entrepreneurs in a 38-county region around Dayton, Southwestern Ohio and parts of Kentucky and Indiana. Area developers are being invited to a meeting at accounting firm Brady Ware & Co.’s downtown Dayton offices Friday to learn more.

Albert Naggar, owner of Process Equipment Co., said his region is one of 440 in the U.S. and six in Ohio. But many are not operational, he said. A developer looking for an “alternative form of funding” for all or part of a project could turn to Naggar’s region for additional capital.

“Getting involved in a successful local project … would be appealing to us. And I think it would be appealing to the EB-5 investors,” Naggar said.

Naggar said he is speaking with “a handful” of local developers now on prospective projects.

Each foreign investor must invest at least $500,000 in an endeavor that creates at least 10 jobs, directly or indirectly, Naggar said.

In return, investors receive a “conditional” green card. “The objective is for them to have permanent residency here for their family,” Naggar said.

“It’s one of those win-wins for everybody,” he said.

Citing a national report, the National Law Review reported that the EB-5 program contributed $3.39 billion to U.S. gross domestic product and supported some 42,000 U.S. jobs in 2012. Some have concerns about how the investments are overseen, however.

Audrey Singer, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, questions whether the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency has the business acumen to properly monitor EB-5 investments.

“It’s a very unusual (program) for the U.S immigration system,” Singer said. “It’s a place where business and immigration meet, and that doesn’t happen very often.”

Robert Divine, an immigration attorney in Chattanooga, Tenn., said investors who take advantage of EB-5 are looking for U.S. citizenship and an investment opportunity. “What it literally is, is a path to permanent residence. That’s what the law says it’s about.”

Eighty percent of investors using the program are from China, he said.


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