The Real Deal New York

WATCH: Ben Shaoul embraces Bitcoin

Developer will be holding onto the cryptocurrency, which is skyrocketing in value
October 16, 2017 03:43PM

With so much inventory on the market in New York, developers are looking anywhere and everywhere for an edge. For Magnum Real Estate Group’s Ben Shaoul, that means embracing the cryptocurrency movement.

“Our buyer has evolved, they’ve moved from mom and pops to young people who want to pay with various forms of payment,” Shaoul told CBNC. “Cryptocurrency is something that has been asked of us — ‘Can you take cryptocurrency? Can we pay that way?’ — and of course when somebody wants to pay you with a different form of payment, you’re going to try to work with them and give them what they want, especially in a very busy real estate market.”

Shaoul is in the midst of developing Liberty Toye at 62 Avenue B, where he will be accepting bitcoin. He is also developing a 96-unit condominium next to Katz’s Deli at 196 Orchard Street. The condos are priced between $700,000 and $1.5 million.

“I think the demographic of the crypto user is a younger millennial, but, that being said, you have a lot of people come over from other countries, who are buyers from different places, who like to trade in different types of currency,” Shaoul said. “Not everyone wants to trade in dollars or yen or euros.”

Shaoul told CNBC that he plans to hold onto any bitcoins he receives, rather than converting them into dollars. Bitcoin, which is notoriously volatile, is once again appreciating. That means that Shaoul and other developers who agree to accept bitcoin, could see an even greater return on their investment. [CNBC]Christopher Cameron