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Alternative Market Briefing

With the rules in place, opportunity zones gain traction with investors

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York:

Opportunity Zones represent a multi-billion pipeline of potential real estate and operating business investments. Opportunity zones provide a tax deferral benefit to investors who back projects in zones for ten years. The goal of the program is to encourage capital investment throughout the US especially outside of the crowded tech and business corridors on both coasts. In April, the IRS finalized a set of rules for operating businesses in opportunity zones explaining how they will need to do business in order to reap the tax benefits of the program.

Investors were waiting for these rules before they signed on to projects in opportunity zones. Now, with a framework in place, opportunity zone evangelists expect the program to take off. Real estate and private equity investors in opportunity zones took to the stages at the SALT conference to highlight the potential of the program.

"Opportunity zones are a once in a lifetime or twice in a lifetime opportunity," said Chris Leoffler, CEO of CaliberCo. He noted that the program has the potential to speed up investment in up and coming areas like Jacksonville, Florida or Phoenix, Arizona - middle market cities that are beginning to attract startups and other parts of the new economy.

Cities with proactive Mayors and economic development agencies will be the early winners in the program, according to Launchpad CEO Chris Shultz. He added that cities that are ready to partner with the......................

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