As a commercial real estate broker who has represented sellers in some of the most valuable recent property transactions in Charlotte and indeed throughout the Carolinas, Jared Londry is uniquely qualified to discuss the impact of foreign investment on the real estate industry as a whole. Foreign investors from countries all over the world hold some of the most valuable commercial properties in the United States, yet the identity of these wealthy foreign investors is not exactly common knowledge despite the fact that the information can be accessed with relative ease.
Londry, who has brokered sales consistently exceeding seven- and eight-figure totals and represented the seller of the Fort Mill, South Carolina, office buildings that sold for $39.5 million, estimates that it is Wang Jianlin of China that is currently the richest foreign real estate investor in US properties in all the world. The owner of a commercial development company has a net worth approaching $30 billion and just recently purchased over 270 Carmike Cinema locations through AMC, which his development company acquired back in 2012. Wang’s most recent purchase makes AMC the world’s largest theater operator, and it makes his foreign investment portfolio in commercial real estate all the more valuable.
Of course, there are countless other billionaire real estate investors stateside, and many of them should be quite familiar to even those not professionally involved in the commercial real estate industry. Fans of the NFL will surely recognize Stan Kroenke’s name, as the owner of the now-Los Angeles Rams founded an exceptionally successful real estate and development company over 30 years ago close to the city — St. Louis, Missouri — that just lost the NFL team Kroenke owns. There’s also Richard LeFrak, the developer responsible for LeFrak City in Queens, New York, and the Jersey City development now known as Newport.