Thursday, May 21, 2015

EB-5 is Working for Cleveland

Welcome to Cleveland International Fund’s first in a series of blog posts that provide an insider’s view of how the USCIS’ EB-5 Program is helping finance economic development across Greater Cleveland.

For those new to our blog EB-5 is the US Government’s Immigrant Investor program that allows foreign nationals who invest a significant amount of vetted capital into a job-creating US project or business to then be eligible for US residency. CiF is a USCIS Regional Center, which is a private company authorized by the USCIS to create and market these kinds of investments.

With more than $200 million in EB-5 funds under management, CiF has consistently recruited foreign investors and used their investment capital to create jobs and fill critical gaps in financing, allowing for the completion of several major Cleveland developments.  

Though the EB-5 program has, at the national level, been the subject of some bad press as of late, those stories do not reflect the on-the-ground reality of EB-5 investments here in Cleveland, which have had a positive impact on the local economy.

So while the EB-5 program (not unlike the finance industry in general) may have a small number of bad actors who cause problems that echo at the national level, EB-5 has proven itself in many places to be a powerful tool for economic development in distressed regions – places like Greater Cleveland for example - that suffer from a lack of flexible investment capital, resulting in fewer new development projects.

We at CiF are pleased that we have been able to use the EB-5 program for local benefit, helping to finance projects that create jobs and have the potential to be catalytic drivers of long-term economic growth for the City; development projects such as the Flats East Bank or the new Westin Downtown Hotel.

So stay tuned! Over the next several months, we will be updating this space with more information about past CiF investments, the merits of EB-5 capital, and the economic development benefits those projects have brought to our region.

NextThe Flats East Bank Project: An Overview