Has anyone pursued Holborn's Royal Obidos project?

Would love to hear if people have any recent experience with Holborn Assets.
And especially curious if anyone has tried or vetted their Royal Obidos investment with a fixed 5% annual return and guaranteed buyback?

Too good to be true? Risks that I might be missing?

Sending you a DM

So after talking to several law firms and other GV applicants, I can provide what I’ve learned in case anyone in the future finds this thread:

Firstly, after researching this, I have personally decided to move forward with a lawyer instead of a financial advisor as I feel their incentives align in a way that feels comfortable for me. I will also go with an established investment fund that clearly meets the government’s new criteria (60% Portuguese, avoiding real estate).

So after the government changed the law in Oct 2023 to stop real estate investing as a mechanism for the Portuguese Golden Visa, some hospitality funds with guaranteed buybacks sprung up. Since these are so young, I couldn’t find any evidence that they would successfully pass the bar to qualify for the type of investment required by the government. The lawyers I spoke to thought that the spirit of these investments were in opposition to the Oct 2023 law and recommended that I avoid them. They said that at the point that an immigration office might deny an application because of an unsatisfactory investment, my money could already be locked up in an investment with a 5+ year hold.

Some types of funds might not necessarily have real collateral. So just be sure to read contracts well.

Also consider researching comps against the value of the type of property being pitched.

Best of luck!

PS - Apparently Portugal has very strict defamation laws. This made finding unbiased reviews of lawyers very challenging. And it makes talking about this sort of thing delicate.

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Milo did you receive any feedback directly that could help others considering this option?

could you please share any info you have?

Sent direct messages

I’d also would love to find a lawyer instead of a financial advisor who could advise on some of these funds. So far in journey things have not been very transparent.

I think for funds the safest option is publicly traded like @jb4422

… ?

I’m not a publicly traded fund.

If you want to send me EUR500,000 that’d be ok. The result might not be what you expect, of course.

:slight_smile:

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I really hate to say “good luck with that”, but, well, um… good luck with that.

A lawyer is probably not going to do any better, and of course is likely to know far less about the topic.

Most financial advisors have a bias unless you do a fee-only one, and even then you’re never really sure. This isn’t particularly new or unique to Portugal.

I assume you’re coming at it from the US POV. Let’s just say, once you leave the shores of the US, the entire world changes and everything gets complicated. There are no easy answers. The closest one that exists is Mercan. I’ve written quite a bit on this topic. I should probably make a blurb I can cut-paste or have @tkrunning make me a static post or something.

I thought you’d invested in one of the publicly listed funds, but of course I may be misremembering.

Nope. Many other people did, not me.

And for what it’s worth, I do agree. Using a publicly traded fund such as IMGA is the simplest option, aside from Mercan. It is safest in terms of “i won’t end up losing money for reasons I do not understand.”, because it works in the same way that other investments they own does (plus or minus) and therefore they can understand it.

Whether or not it is a safe option in terms of “I won’t lose money” is debatable, of course, since we are talking about stock market investments. People have different beliefs around such matters and I can’t speak to that. But at least you will lose money along with a lot of other people and for reasons you can understand (“the market went down” and there will be articles from financial pundits on the matter).

Private equity or real estate ventures can be a better choice. However, most people simply don’t understand what they are getting into and don’t have the time or tools to make informed choices. Therefore they simply shouldn’t be playing with them if they are taking risks with a large percentage of their assets, which is the case with many people here.

It would be fine perhaps if you could find an advisor you can trust, but given it is a foreign country most people here simply have no experience with (almost by definition) this isn’t realistically possible.

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Indeed. I’m in finance, not PE but adjacent, and I know how much work is involved in adequate due diligence. The thought of doing that on my own for multiple funds in a foreign country was more than I was willing to take on. Add to that my deep suspicion of investment products where the key benefit is something other - like a tax break or, in this case, a visa - these are so often a magnet for low quality managers and schemes. So I went for the open ended equity fund option, which at least is transparent and not run with the ARI in mind.

For what it’s worth. I did happen to do some basic DD on Holborn for another project of theirs. They seemed at least legit. They were fronting a deal for Excellium, which is a Mercan-clone. It was a registered capital company in the UK with non-trivial assets, and they did seem to own the building they claimed to plan to work on. The basic premise wasn’t stupid and wasn’t that risky, given that was more or less a fresh-up of an existing apartment building, so you actually owned a generically-useful but old mid-scale apartment in the middle of Albuferia. In its way it’s better than Mercan, in that you’re not getting 1/100 of a dead building. You got the deed to the named apartment on signing, not after the fact, so you had tangible surety throughout the process.

I was going to send a third party assessor over with no known ties over to investigate the building and perform a full analysis of the building’s existing value and prospect for updating. The owner welcomed the request and was happy to arrange the visit and provide full access to the building. However this was during covid and they were caught in lockdowns, and I let the whole thing drop from there.

This isn’t a recommendation. This is incomplete DD on Excellium, not Holborn, and not of the project you are looking at. Do your own. But it’s not a total waste of time, as were some others I looked at.

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Edit. Only willing to discuss, phone or zoom. I passed.

Were you able to find an answer to this? I am very interested as well.