The first step for EB-5 project developers who want to count direct, indirect, and induced jobs is to find a regional center to sponsor the project. Businesses planning to meet the EB-5 program’s employment creation requirements through only direct jobs need a compliant business plan, targeted employment area (TEA) designation (if applicable), securities documents (e.g., a private placement memorandum, corporate governance documents, etc.), and the necessary number of investors. Qualified securities counsel should prepare the securities documents. Any business seeking EB-5 capital should retain an immigration attorney with EB-5 experience to help navigate the complicated requirements of the program.
Once an EB-5 project has all the necessary documentation, an escrow account should be set up for the new commercial enterprise (NCE). The EB-5 investors will transfer their capital to this account. Then, the EB-5 project must begin the marketing process to find investors. Many EB-5 projects use foreign migration agents or consultants to market the project and find qualifying investors. However, project developers could also hire a registered U.S. broker to manage the EB-5 investment funds or simply use direct marketing to attract overseas investors. Preparing a compelling and well-designed collection of marketing materials is critical because most potential investors learn about EB-5 projects through informational seminars or webinars. A representative from the EB-5 project should attend these events to answer the investors’ questions.
Raising EB-5 investment capital is a complicated and lengthy process that typically takes several years. EB-5 project developers need to hire knowledgeable consultants who possess an exhaustive knowledge of the regulations governing EB-5 investments. In light of the EB-5 program’s complexity and numerous guidelines, interested foreign nationals should also make sure to work with an experienced immigration attorney and EB-5 specialists. Investors will need their assistance to comply with the EB-5 program’s guidelines and receive permanent resident status.