The Real Deal Miami

Michael Simkins sells warehouse in northwest Miami-Dade to financial technology firm

Buyer, NES Financial, specializes in administering EB-5 projects
By Keith Larsen | June 08, 2018 12:34PM

Michael Simkins and the property

Michael Simkins just sold a warehouse in northwest Miami-Dade for $5.25 million to a California financial technology company that specializes in administering EB-5 projects.

NES Financial, a San Francisco-based company that provides back office services for complex financial transactions, bought the property at 6955 Northwest 52nd Street from Simkins.

Simkins, the president and CEO of Innovate Miami, purchased the 88,862-square-foot property, which includes a 43,091-square-foot warehouse, in 2006 for $4.9 million, property records show. The latest sale equates to $121 per square foot for the warehouse and $59 per square for the land.

The two-story warehouse was built in 1998 and has 18-foot ceilings.

Simkins co-founded Innovate Development Group with his brother, Ron Simkins, who is COO of the firm. Innovate’s planned projects include a 10-acre Miami Innovation District in Park West, just west of Miami Worldcenter. The site was among the eight locations in South Florida pitched to Amazon for its second headquarters.

The buyer, NES Financial Corp specializes in providing technology-enabled solutions to administer the entire EB-5 program life cycles, according to its website.

Under the federal program’s current guidelines, foreign investors are eligible to apply for a green card if they invest at least $1 million – or $500,000 in a high-unemployment area or rural area – in an enterprise and create at least 10 jobs.

While it was once a popular way to finance real estate projects in South Florida, developers are now relying less on the program as part of their capital stack due to the uncertainty of the program’s existence and a backlog of Chinese visa applications.