Condos for Czech Republic workers. Luxury high-rises in Brazil. Former government-owned rentals in Germany. Massive new multifamily complexes in China. These are the surprising new targets of many U.S. multifamily firms. “Global real estate is a growth market,” says Gleb Nechayev, senior economist of the Boston-based research firm Torto Wheaton, a subsidiary of CB Richard Ellis. “In many areas, particularly emerging countries like India and China, local investors have little background in professionally-run apartment operations.”
Just as the manufacturing world has beaten a path to Asia-Pacific, multifamily developers also see that region as a land of great potential.
Sister Lillian Murphy, Mercy's CEO for 20 of its 26-year history, is indeed a formidable force when it comes to championing the cause of low-income housing. “She's not afraid to stand toe-to-toe with congressmen,” notes Shekar Narasimhan, managing partner for Beekman Advisors, a Virginia consulting firm. “With its size and breadth of its product, Mercy is one of the nation's most influential organizations focusing on affordable housing.”
One of the company's principals reads to children in an after-school program. The human resources manager spearheads programs for single mothers. A property manager helps a laid-off resident find a new job.
Her voice suggests a perky 15-year-old, and she stands barely five feet tall. But those who have seen Debra Cafaro in action know that she is anything but a pushover.