Portuguese group launches real estate investment fund for Chinese investors
In a bid to take advantage of the interest and enthusiasm of private Chinese investors in real estate investment in Portugal, one of Portugal’s largest groups plans to launch am investment fund focused on private investors from China.
Linked to Portuguese group José de Mello, the Imoecading fund has been presented in Shanghai, where almost 100 meetings were held with potential investors.
José António de Mello, chairman of fund manager Selecta, said that the 30 million-euro fund has already been partially subscribe by Ecadint, a Hong Kong based company, and that initially the fund will seek out investments in office and retail space in the Portuguese and Spanish markets.
“There are opportunities in Portugal for those who have access to capital despite the fact that the crisis has not finished completely and that investors always prefer managers who are specialized in the market and who have know how,” said the Selecta manager, who is responsible for the Imoecading fund.
The first subscriber, Ecadint, has several properties in Angola and has been in the Portuguese market since 2011.
Selecta currently has 615 million euros of assets under its management and is present in Portugal, Spain and Brazil.
The fund, which is intended to reach a total of 50 million euros in the medium term and 150 million euros in the long term, is the first in Portugal to focus on “qualified and private investors from China.”
In addition to office and retail spaces the fund is also open to investments in properties in the tourism sector, particularly those owned by banks, and is targeting a return of 6 to 7 percent per year.
Chinese citizens have, by far, been the biggest group to sign up for a “golden visa” scheme that Portugal launched at the end of 2012, which offers access to the Schenghen space in return for real estate investments of at least 500,000 euros.
Thanks to these visas the Chinese community is registering a rapid growth, of over 6.8 percent in 2013 compared to 2012.
According to a report from the Portuguese Foreigners and Borders Services (SEF) Chinese citizens account for 80 percent of requests for those visas, or 1,116 candidates in 2013, as well as residence permits offered to family members.
Visas were granted in return for investments of 307 million euros last year, and this figure is expected to rise three-fold this year to 1 billion euros, according to the Portuguese authorities.