Shuaa launches €100m real estate fund for investors seeking second residency or citizenship

Investment vehicle launched in partnership with Arton Capital will invest in high-growth markets such as Montenegro

Shuaa Capital and Arton Capital are launching a €100m real estate fund to invest in high-growth markets. Jaime Puebla/The National
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Dubai investment banking firm Shuaa Capital and financial advisory firm Arton Capital are launching a €100 million (Dh436m) real estate investment fund for investors looking for a second residency or citizenship programme.

The two partners plan to create a suite of investment opportunities that will satisfy the growing demand by investors seeking alternative citizenships in high-growth markets such as Montenegro, Shuaa said in a statement on Wednesday to the Dubai Financial Market, where its shares trade.

The fund will target returns in excess of 20 per cent through the acquisition, development and sale of real estate projects to investors. It has already identified two mixed-use projects in Montenegro for potential investments that are ready to apply for the Montenegrin government’s approval, Shuaa said.

“Citizenship by Investment is a competitive global market and the Covid-19 pandemic has only further increased demand as more and more people across the world are now thinking of how to medically, socially and financially secure their future,” Mustafa Kheriba, deputy chief executive and head of asset Management at Shuaa, said.

The partnership, he said, is the “perfect alliance” of Shuaa’s real estate and fund management expertise with Arton's experience of second residency and citizenship advisory.

Armand Arton, founder of Arton Capital, said the new fund will also help governments in attracting foreign direct investment to help boost their economic development.

Citizenship by investment schemes have helped countries attract FDI and boost economies. Investments through the real estate sector, industries and special bonds allow governments to inject fresh capital into building infrastructure, growing tourism, funding local companies and increasing employment. Greece, Portugal, Hungary, St. Kitts & Nevis, and Grenada are among other countries that have citizenship by investment schemes.

Arton Capital has already helped several governments in attracting more than $4 billion in foreign direct investment through residency and citizenship programmes over the past five years, according to the statement.

Shuaa, which manages $13bn in assets, plans to expand its investment banking and asset management businesses to boost AUMS to $20bn.

In October, the company launched a $200m fund, targeting investments in special situations across Gulf countries. The Shuaa Financing Opportunities Fund was the fourth investment vehicle rolled out by the firm this year.