One of the world’s top real estate crowdfunders is attacking the Chinese market.
Wealth Migrate is a cross border investment platform that operates across 5 continents and which has closed over $1.3 billion in cumulative transactions. The platform facilitates a range of deal types, including both equity and debt. We recently caught up with Wealth Migrate Founder and CEO Scott Picken, who was most enthused about the platform’s latest expansion.
Wealth Migrate has opened a new office in Shanghai. This marks the second time that the platform has established a physical presence in Asia, after it opened up an office in Singapore last September. Wealth Migrate has necessarily launched the new venture with a number of local partners.
The platform is pointing to the “exponential growth of crowdfunding” in China as the primary motivation behind the move, whilst a strong general demand for quality real estate investments in the region also stood out as a key factor.
The stats are there to back up the latter of these factors. The National Association of Realtors recently revealed that Chinese investors have surpassed Canadians as the largest group of foreign investors to play in the US real estate space. Chinese investments in global real estate markets are expected to top £15 billion this year, according to the Knight Frank Chinese Outward Real Estate report.
The rapid growth of "crowdfunding" (by which Wealth Migrate refers to many different types of “internet finance”) in China is beyond contestation. The Real Estate Crowdfunding Report by research firm Massolution revealed Asia to be the world's fastest growing crowdfunding market in 2014, exhibiting 320% growth on the previous year. Leading P2P lending platform Lufax currently boasts a staggering 10 million registered users. But the vast majority of the many thousands of platforms in China offer their investors exposure to Chinese consumer or SME debt. There are very few platforms that we’re aware of that allow Chinese investors to put money to work overseas. But that’s exactly what Wealth Migrate intends to do. Mr. Picken explained:
“Shanghai is well on its way to becoming the financial hub of the world. Our goal is for the Shanghai office to support the interests of Chinese investors who want to grow their wealth overseas.”