Congratulations out to Arthur, Carolina, and all the folks at Queensfort/Sonic for their first I-526 approval! The EB-5 investor, who wanted an equity-based EB-5 project, contacted me via Immigration Insider. He was the first to invest in QS and LatourLaw filed his I-526 - their first. Fittingly, the first of many QS I-526s now in the pipeline was the first to be approved by USCIS.
As my readers know, I have been pretty critical of the equity-based EB-5 structures I've seen; the structure put together by Queensfort, however, is an entirely different animal. Instead of putting the EB-5 investor's interests last (as virtually all I've reviewed do), an innovative series of protections are in place for EB-5 Limited Partners. It took Carolina hammering me over the head for a few weeks before I understood, but I finally got it. Their brilliant "Floridizing" of the venerable Sonic brand into "Sonic Beach" is the right product at the right time, as evidenced by the 3 block long line of cars at the drive through I witnessed at their first Grand Opening. Just as the mighty CMB redefined EB-5 investor protection through their meticulous structuring of the first successful loan-based EB-5 program, Queensfort proved to me that not ALL equity models are bad, and that it IS possible to create equity-based EB-5 structures which are fair to the EB-5 investor.
Sharon and I will continue to bring you the very best EB-5 projects we find, whether loan-based or equity-based. The lesson repeats itself daily: an EB-5 opportunity is only as sound as the integrity of its General Partner...period.
Miss Carolina, I believe you now owe me at least three martinis...(-;