LCR Capital Partners recently visited Accra, Ghana to help launch the EB5 program and introduce to U/HNW investors. LCR’s Co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer, Rogelio Caceres, gave an exclusive interview to the Metro TV’s Business Edition.
Kwasi: Right. So we are at Kempinski Hotel here. And we’re here, the program EB-5. We have had the opportunity to sit with the leaders of the program, the technocrats here, to ask them questions. Rogelio is a co-partner to EB-5. I’m sure I’m right?
Rogelio: I’m the co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer for LCR Capital Partners. Yes.
Kwasi: Right. LCR?
Rogelio: LCR Capital Partners. Correct.
Kwasi: Right. So, what’s it about? What’s LCR about?
Rogelio: So we’re a private investment firm headquartered in Westport, Connecticut, that helps international investors and their children obtain US Green cards by deploying their investments in government approved hospitality and real estate projects, primarily in Miami and New York City. We’re currently offering Ghanaian investors the opportunity to invest in a Four Seasons hotel and luxury condominium in Miami Beach, and we’re here for the remainder of the week meeting with prospective investors on that.
Kwasi: How has it been so far? Meeting with prospective investors. You’ve met some already. How are they taking it? We’ll come back into the details of the program, but how has it been so far?
Rogelio: So the program is, unfortunately, there’s very low awareness about the program, the EB-5 program across Ghana, yet it’s been around since 1990. It’s a Federal program that George H. W. Bush, the former president Bush, signed into law. And it rewards investors with a Green card, provided that their $500,000 investment creates at least 10 new American jobs.
Kwasi: So, take me through, if I’m an investor or a client of yours, what do I need to do? I pay $500,000 to you?
Rogelio: Well, before we accept any capital, we wanna make sure that you meet the three key requirements of the program. Number one, you must be able to invest the $500,000 upfront. It can’t be, I’ll pay you later, or in installments. Number two, you must not have a criminal background. So you cannot have any, you know, felony convictions, any terrorist affiliations, things of that nature. And three, your $500,000 must be of legal origin. We must be able to document where the capital came from. And as long as we do that, we’ll accept you into the program, into the project, and you’ll be getting a green card in about two years’ time.
Kwasi: If I have the $500,000 in my account, how are you able to verify its legal origin? How I made the money. How are you able to verify? Do you have any partnerships with any legal firm? How are you able to verify?
Rogelio: So yes, depends on how you earn the capital. Was it a sale of a property? Was it retained earnings from your business? Was it an inheritance? All of these have specific requirements in terms of how you document them, tax returns, filing statements, things of that nature. We work with leading US-based law firms that are responsible for documenting the source of funds, and we’re here currently in Ghana with the largest single-purpose business immigration law firm. It’s a firm called Fragomen Worldwide. And their director of client services based in Dubai, Naphi Mujidi [SP], flew down with us and we’re here again meeting with investors, assessing their qualifications, and if they’re interested moving forward with the application process.
Kwasi: Convince me why I should choose you over other investment opportunities that I may have. There are real estate businesses going on here, hospitality businesses going on here. Why don’t I invest in them but come back to you?
Rogelio: Yes. Well, it’s a very good question. We would never claim that we’re the only good project out there. There’s over 800 companies in the United States that have licenses to operate in this sector. But this project is very unique in the sense that it’s already government approved. It already has created more than enough jobs to meet the requirements of our investors. In fact, over 8,000 jobs have already been created in the project. It’s very low risk in the sense that it’s largely complete. Project construction will end next year, so it largely has been completed. And again, it’s in one of the world’s leading hospitality companies, the Four Seasons. So while there are other projects out there, I think ours is a very attractive project and we hope to convince many people here to invest in it.
Kwasi: Thank you very much for the opportunity.
Rogelio: Thank you.
Kwasi: We are grateful. So this is Business Edition. My name is Kwasi Afriyie. Thank you very much for watching.