How the west was won: Why Chinese developers and agents are moving west

Recent statistics show that in the past six months, the Chinese have splurged $6 billion AUD into the Australian property market. This represents one-quarter of the total Chinese foreign property sales for that period, with the USA and UK also topping the list of Chinese overseas investment destinations. The chart below shows the soaring trend of Chinese real estate investment into the world gateway cities.

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This trend was driven by a few factors, such as the cooling down of the Chinese domestic property market, the devaluation of Chinese currency, the recovery of the US economy, and the stable ROI of Australian property just to name a few.

There are three key business groups following the trend and benefiting greatly. The first group is the Chinese agents that have been selling overseas property from the very beginning. This group has been growing steadily as the demand from the market increases and the client base is spreading from tier 1 cities to tier 2 and further nationwide. The second group going west are the Chinese developers, who face limited development potential within the China market. They are attracted by the profit of project development in overseas markets, and wherever the Chinese want to buy and live, they will follow. Now Chinese developers are frequently seen in popular Chinese immigration cities such as New York, London, Sydney, Melbourne, etc. This action prompted the domestic agents who used to sell for their Chinese projects locally to join the journey  west,  becoming the third business force. It’s becoming a popular business concept for Chinese domestic agents to look into the new realm of selling overseas projects.

Investorist, being the platform that connects developers and agents, is the first witness of this transformation in the Chinese market. Top Chinese agencies, such as Lianjia, Dooioo, and Sunco have expressed their urgent need to access overseas property via Investorist. Different from the first group of agents, who are usually small to medium-sized businesses, these Chinese domestic agents have been dominating the gigantic Chinese property market through their thousands of chain stores and enormous client databases.

Take Investorist’s latest member in China, Lianjia Real Estate, as an example. Established in 2001, Lianjia Co. Ltd. engages in the real estate management, finance, and asset management of properties. Today it has grown into one of the largest Chinese domestic real estate agencies with more than 3, 500 chain stores of 50, 000 sales covering 17 major Chinese cities. The record sales revenue of Lianjia is RMB400billion (AUD $89billion) per year.

In 2015, Lianjia made a strategic decision to add overseas property into its product line. Investorist’s platform provides an instant solution to their need. “ I often like to try new creative things, Investorist is one of them. It makes it easier to find the right project for my clients and saves time. I would recommend it to my partners, but not my competitors !” commented by Shan Yigang, Director of Lianjia Overseas Dept.

Now back to the group of Chinese developers and their increasing action in overseas markets, let’s just have a sneak peek of who they are and where they’ve been working in the past five years.

Company Transaction Time Location Projects $ Value (in million AUD) Building type
Wanda January, 2015 Sydney, Au 1 Alfred and Fairfax House 515.8
Complex building
Wanda August, 2014 Gold Coast, Au Jewel 971 Hotel and Apartment
Wanda August, 2014 L.A. USA Beverley Hill 1200 Complex landmark building
Wanda July, 2014 Chicago, USA 900 Hotel and apartment
Wanda June, 2014 Madrid, Spain 386.9 Complex building
Wanda June, 2014 London, UK Wanda Hotel 627.2 Hotel
Wanda May, 2013 USA AMC cinema line 3.6 billion Acquisition deal
Greenland August, 2014 Korea 490acre land Resorts
Greenland July, 2014 Queensland, Au Queens Quay, Brisbane Tourism complex building
Greenland July, 2014 Paris, France Twin-tower Complex building
Greenland March, 2014 Sydney, Au Two lots of land Residential and commercial building complex
Greenland March, 2014 Toronto, Canada Two complex buildings Apartment building
Greenland February, 2014 Malay Two lots of land est. 3.8 billion Apartment, hotel
Greenland January, 2014 L.A. USA Greenland Hotel Hotel
Greenland January, 2014 Sydney, Au Greenland Primus Hotel Hotel
Greenland January, 2014 London, UK Canary Quay 2.3 billion Apartment
Greenland November, 2013 Melbourne, Au Two lots in Flemington Apartment
Greenland November, 2013 Korea Greenland Dream Building 1 billion Resorts
Greenland October, 2013 NY. USA Atlantic Plaza 5.5billion Apartment
Greenland August, 2013 Thailand Four projects 2 billion Residential, commercial, complex
Greenland July, 2013 California, US Metropolitan project 1.1billion Apartment and hotel
Greenland July, 2013 Madrid, Spain Two hotels 250 Hotel
Greenland March, 2013 Sydney, AU Greenland centre 480 Apartment, commercial complex
Greenland December, 2011 Korea Tourism resorts 1 billion Resorts
Shimao Property November, 2014 Sydney, AU CBD office building 390 Office tower
Country Garden February, 2014 Sydney, AU
Country Garden December, 2012 New gulf project
Country Garden 2011 KL, Malay Two luxury apartment projects
Country Garden August, 2011 Malay Mayland development co. acquisition 55% shareholder
R&F Properties December, 2013 Malay Six lots 1.7 billion Residential
MacroLink Group January, 2014 Malay Residential
Agile Property January, 2014 Malay 1 lot 80 Residential
Wanke April, 2014 Hong Kong 12-24 Wanchai 140 Residential
Wanke February, 2014 NY. USA 610 Lexington Ave, Manhattan Apartment, commercial complex
Wanke April, 2013 Singapore Apartment
Wanke February, 2013 LA. USA Lumina Residential
Wanke January, 2013 Hong Kong Tsuen Wan 458 Residential
Beijing Capital Development Holdings March, 2014 NY. USA 10,000sqm development in Manhattan 120 Apartment
China Oceanwide December, 2014 San Fransisco, USA First & Mission project 325.6 Office Building
China Oceanwide December, 2013 L.A. USA 220 Office Building
ShenLong Group December, 2014 Sydney, AU Two lots 220
ShenLong Group September, 2014 Sydney, AU North Ryde 170 Complex
ShenLong Group 2013 Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, AU Three lots Apartment
Fosun Group January, 2015 Sydney, AU 73 Miller St. Office Building
Fosun Group 2014 London, UK Lloyds Chambers Office Building
Fosun Group August, 2014 Tokyo, Japan Office Building
Fosun Group December, 2013 NY. USA Manhattan 797 Office Building

It’s clear from these figures, pulled from the Investorist platform, that Chinese developers are putting more and more focus on international developments where they know their clientele will buy. This trend shows no signs of slowing down either, with platforms like Investorist in place to make it incredibly easy for developers and agents to access international property with the click of a button.

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