The EB-5 program continues to become more mainstream. In addition to being an effective way to raise capital, it is creating jobs and stimulating the United States economy. More and more Regional Centers are being approved, and traditional real estate developers are looking to EB-5 as a way to fund their projects. As a result, there are many new participants in the industry. It’s important to understand that EB-5 is a highly specialized area. For those starting out, it is crucial to put together the right team of people for success. At the very minimum, your team should include the following five groups of people:
1) Immigration Attorneys. The EB-5 offering is ultimately a vehicle for foreign investors to apply for a permanent green card, so a good immigration attorney is in many ways the “quarterback” to the overall process. The immigration attorney must coordinate with the entire team to put together the required USCIS filings in a timely manner.
2) Securities/Business Attorneys. EB-5 investments, by definition, are considered to be securities offerings, but they are saddled with complexities not found in any other type of offering. Compliance with SEC rules and regulations is essential, but often times is easier said than done. From forming the appropriate entities, to mapping the flow of funds from investor to a job creating enterprise, securities and business attorneys with in depth experience in EB-5 are far better equipped to design an offering package that not only satisfies the SEC but also allows the immigration attorneys to comply with the USCIS.
3) Business Plan Writers. USCIS petitions for the approval of EB-5 Regional Centers (I-924) and immigrants (I-526) require extensive descriptions of the proposed business plan. Whether your immigration attorneys are filing an exemplar for general approval or filing for approval of a specific project, your business plan writer will need to produce market analysis and feasibility studies, descriptions of the capital stack and how it will be deployed, and most importantly, how the investment funds will be used to create the requisite number of jobs. It is crucial to work with someone who understands the unique needs of an EB-5 business plan, because an EB-5 business plan is quite different from a typical business plan.
4) Economists. Remember that EB-5 is an immigration program which exists because it creates U.S. jobs. The offering’s economic impact analysis must provide verifiable detail for the immigration attorneys on how jobs will be created and the economic impact of those jobs. These numbers drive the securities and business attorneys’ assessment of the amount of EB-5 capital that can be applied to a project.
5) NES Financial. For middle and back office administration, NES Financial is the perfect partner to provide comprehensive management, tracking, and reporting associated with the flow of funds, which is essential for the immigration attorneys to file successful petitions with the USCIS. Our EB-5 Escrow and EB-5 Fund Administration Solutions have been used on more than 220 EB-5 projects to date. Our brand is synonymous with security and transparency – two things that are very important to investors. By working with NES Financial, EB-5 issuers gain efficiency in middle and back office operations, enabling them to focus more on their project in highly competitive overseas markets.
What is EB-5? Find out more by downloading our EB-5 Administration Solution Sheet