EB5 Investors Magazine - Page 78

[ CORPORATE & SECURITIES ATTORNEYS ] As one half of the two-member firm, Kingston Petersen, based in Seattle, Andrew Kingston provides one-on-one personalized counsel for his clients. An honors graduate of Harvard Law School, Andrew has been practicing corporate and securities law for more than 27 years. He got his start in the EB-5 industry in 2009 and has since acted as securities law counsel for EB-5 private placements, working directly with issuers in each case. Andrew Kingston Before Andrew takes on any EB-5 project – and he turns away a fair number so that he can provide highly concentrated service to those he does accept – he performs comprehensive due diligence to confirm project reputability. As a result, he has helped a number of EB-5 projects become fully subscribed. He finds that even though he plays a relatively small role in a much larger project, knowing he is part of a successfully developing enterprise is one of the most gratifying aspects of working in EB-5. working in EB-5. He hopes that as EB-5 practitioners continue to accrue experience, the quality of projects and EB-5 legal work will continue to improve, and EB-5 will become a more accepted financing tool. Andrew’s success in his EB-5 corporate and securities work also lies in his ability to help project sponsors adjust their expectations. He has found that sponsors sometimes think of EB-5 financing as easy money, and he is skilled in explaining that the process is time-and-effort-intensive without any guaranteed success. Andrew has seen the industry become muc h more serious, attracting a greater quality of professionals across all of its dimensions compared to when he first began Ultimately, when somebody hires Andrew for an EB-5 project, they get an indefatigable commitment to their case and the benefit of three decades of experience providing financing, transactional and corporate law services to clients throughout the world. Andrew has also served as an adjunct professor of law at Cornell University. A resident of Seattle, Andrew devotes his free time to hiking in the mountains, traveling and spending time with his family. Before Steve Park entered the EB-5 space, he had already gained a reputation in the Southeast region, particularly among Korean companies. When one of his clients—a major tier one automobile parts supplier—approached Steve in 2008 looking to use EB-5 financing to ramp up production, he readily took the project. Steve worked with Top 25 Immigration Attorney Stephen Yale-Loehr to structure a deal for a regional center that would spearhead the financing. Steve is a partner at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP in Atlanta and now works regularly with regional center clients and developers to structure EB-5 deals. Steve estimates that about 50 percent of his current workload is made up of EB-5 projects, while the other portion is made up of finance deals. This bifurcation helps his EB-5 practice, as Steve brings his experience in finance to the negotiating table when structuring EB-5 deals. Because Steve has an intimate knowledge of finance, he brings an extra layer of expertise when advising his clients on how to structure the EB-5 capital stack. Additionally, his strong relationships with traditional banks means that he understands loan transactions and the role that traditional and EB-5 lenders can play in EB-5 deals. Because of the nature of the clients he represents, Steve has encountered many different aspects of law and business practices during his career. The EB-5 industry, he says, is 76 Steve Park the one space where all of those skill sets come together—there he exercises his securities and finance expertise, along with his understanding of the immigration requirements of the program. To supplement his securities and finance counsel, Steve will often interface with experienced immigration attorneys to take a comprehensive look at the deal. Steve appreciates the diversity of work he can perform within the EB-5 industry and the fact that each case allows him to wear many different hats. He is fluent in Korean, has represented public companies on securities compliance issues, and has spoken on finance and securities issues for EB-5 regional centers. EB5 INVESTORS MAGAZINE