EastEdge Partners Creates New Japan Real Estate Business in Changing Market

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Tokyo-based EastEdge Partners is seizing opportunities in Japan's dramatically changing property market. In October, the firm sold an estate in Hakone, Japan; was appointed exclusive agent for a vacation home development in Niseko, Japan; and signed a hotel management contract for a resort in the Philippines.

EastEdge Partners, an innovative Tokyo-based real estate advisory firm, is seizing opportunities in Japan's dramatically changing property market.

"This is a strategic time to buy real estate in Japan, our clients are looking for stability in fundamentals and value," says Jason Holt, CEO of EastEdge Partners.

Despite turmoil in the global equity markets, October has been a month of growth for the new real estate firm. EastEdge's advisory division recently completed the sale of a two-acre prime view estate in Hakone, Japan for a foreign high wealth buyer. The company was appointed as exclusive Japanese broker for the Above + Beyond luxury hotel condominiums in Niseko, Japan. And in the Philippines, EastEdge signed a hotel management contract for a luxury resort property.

Holt views EastEdge's business mix as a unique model for Japan.

"We are succeeding in this market by focusing on opportunities that are not traditional. We attempt to be very progressive and build on an international perspective," says Holt. "For example, helping foreigners find Japanese vacation properties and get a mortgage to buy it, or helping a ryokan owner to improve his marketing and bottom line, or simply sourcing good offmarket deals for institutional size investors and then providing what other advisers can't: a hands-on solution adding value applying hospitality, such as branding or services."

EastEdge was founded last year by Holt, who has significant experience on the forefront of the Japanese real estate and equities markets, participating in various capacities of public and private investment management and project management.    The firm is licensed as a Japan real estate broker and investment advisory. The EastEdge team includes professionals formerly with multi-faceted real estate firm Prospect, the award-winning Oakwood serviced apartments and JAL-Nikko Hotels, and spanning a breadth of capabilities from asset management and sourcing through development, management and hotel operation, all on an international level.

One of EastEdge's successes has been a focus on resort real estate, often an overlooked segment of the Japanese market. An avid outdoorsman, Holt forecasts opportunity in far fledged markets such as Hokkaido, Hakone, Hakuba, Kyoto and Okinawa as inbound tourism to Japan continues to increase.

He forecasts Japan as eventually growing to become the "France of Asia", a cultural tourism mecca increasingly attracting the growing purchasing power of Asia to a wealth of unique experiences.

EastEdge Partners has been granted rights for the exclusive Japan domestic sales for Above + Beyond Niseko, the first 5-star resort hotel-condominium to be offered in Japan. The development features Condominium Suites and Chalets at the world-class ski resort. Buyers will receive rental income while enjoying up to a month of personal use per year.

"This is a very unique, upscale real estate product, for Japan," says Holt. "It the finest quality in Niseko to date and gives individual buyers the previously unavailable opportunity to own a piece of a 5-star hotel."

EastEdge is engaged in property searches for both individual and institutional buyers.

"Some clients are seeking a revenue producing property in Okinawa, while others desire a vacation home in Izu or Hakuba," says Holt. "Of course, the focus for institutional investors has turned full swing to Tokyo and value assets or distressed assets and this is our core competency. But our shop is flexible to the needs of each client large or small, and we use our network to locate desirable properties that fit the investor`s profile... desirable as investments and also as lifestyle products for the retail buyer."

EastEdge has also earned new business in hospitality management. For an entrepreneurial developer in the Philippines, EastEdge has created a new hotel brand that will be unveiled before year's end. The first property will be a 116-room hotel that is a total reconstruction of a once famous resort destination in the Philippines.

"The resort will be renowned for its unique design and integration with the stunning natural surroundings," says Holt, "and its international management systems." Multiple properties are forecast for the new brand.

EastEdge is also working on a new hospitality platform targeting the acquisition of quality residential assets and serviced apartments in central Tokyo, with the aim to add operational and branding value to properties bought at a discount.

How is EastEdge attracting business in this economic climate?

In addition to traditional marketing efforts made to EastEdge`s wide network of institutional investors, Holt has recently attracted clients from his English-language blog (http://eastedge.wordpress.com/), which provides instant and bold analysis of Japanese real estate market trends.

"We are putting out quick feedback and commentary in English, providing a tactical view of the Japanese market, a frank and hopefully insightful opinion for those interested in this sphere," says Holt, citing recent entries promoting the availability of mortgages for foreigners, or commenting on the problems that have led to undervalued J-REIT stocks.

"Our clients can rely on EastEdge for a knowledgeable and transparent voice," he says.

For more information, please contact:
EastEdge Partners
Tokyo: +81-3-3584-5067


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Robert Philips

EastEdge Partners
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