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Anthony Scaramucci’s firm to launch multi-billion-dollar Opportunity Zone fund

Anthony Scaramucci (Credit: Getty Images)

The Mooch is seizing a new opportunity thanks to the Trump administration.

Anthony Scaramucci’s hedge fund Skybridge Capital plans to launch an Opportunity Zone (OZ) fund by the end of the year, according to Business Insider. The firm is seeking to raise up to $3 billion from investors and the fund will be set up as a real estate investment trust. EJF Capital will act as its subadvisor.

“This will be a game-changing product for SkyBridge,” Scaramucci told BI. “This will likely be bigger and more important to the firm than our current fund of funds.”

Skybridge was founded by Scaramucci in 2005 and the firm claims to have $9.6 billion in assets under management as of September 2018. Scaramucci became a household name after serving as the White House’s director of communications for 10 days before being fired.

The OZ program was introduced in the Trump administration’s tax overhaul last year. The program offers tax deferrals and benefits to investors who park their money in assets located within designated low-income neighborhoods. The breaks and benefits increase the longer investments are kept in the zones.

Scaramucci said Skybridge’s OZ fund will demand a minimum six-year commitment and will be investing in real estate projects of all sizes.

“We don’t want to compete with behemoths,” he told BI, adding that even a $10 million deal could be of interest. He claims the fund has already attracted “tons of investor interest.”

The announcement of Skybridge’s fund comes a few weeks after the U.S. Treasury Department released guidelines about the OZ program. A flurry of OZ funds have been launched in recent months by firms such as Youngwoo & Associates, Somera Road, Fundrise and RXR Realty. Skybridge’s subadvisor EJF is also separately raising its own $500 million fund.

The quick succession of launches is reportedly due to the 2026 expiration date of the program’s 15-percent discount on capital gains tax. To claim the benefit, investments must be in place by December 31, 2019.

Intense interest in the OZ program has caused a 80 percent year-over-year jump in the sales prices of development sites located in the zones in each quarter of 2018 so far. [BI]–Erin Hudson

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