So They Say: Gary Garrabrant Talks Emerging Markets, His New Firm


Gary Garrabrant
Gary Garrabrant

Sam Zell’s former partner Gary Garrabrant is back in action and back in the news. This year’s primary target: commercial and residential properties in emerging markets.

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Mr. Garrabrant, 57, and Mr. Zell, 72, are creating competing funds to buy stakes in real estate businesses across Latin America, China and India, The Wall Street Journal reported in late August.

The real estate investor, who stepped down as chief executive of Equity International abruptly in the summer of 2012, is now looking to raise up to $1 billion for a fund at his new private equity firm Jaguar Growth Partners, which he co-founded with Equity International’s former chief strategic officer, Thomas McDonald.

Mortgage Observer looks back at some notable quotes from Mr. Garrabrant.

“My partner, Thomas McDonald, and I really related to this Jaguar, which is an emerging markets cat, firstly, and has qualities that very much apply to our business: patient, yet opportunistic, cautious, yet tenacious, and a Jaguar has a particularly sharp vision in low-light situations, which we translate to insight and perspective gained over 15 years.

“Growth markets represent, over the next 20-25 years, a fundamental opportunity akin to the United States in the 1950s, where household formation drives home purchases, rental housing, retail property, the rising middle class.”

—Interview with Bloomberg News (January 2014)

“In China, the growth is so spectacular and the barriers to entry have become relatively low.”

—Comments during Bloomberg Link’s Singapore Sessions: The Asia Strategy – Outlook for 2012 (February 2012)

“We have, from the inception, focused on emerging markets, believing that the capital inefficiency, the growth of the middle class, weak or non-existent competition and the presence of great partners were among the factors that were attractive.

“We have avoided Western Europe [along with] Canada, and until recently Australia, New Zealand and the U.K., although we have recently entered our first developed markets, namely those three, through a senior housing business.”

—Interview with Knowledge@Wharton Real Estate in Emerging Markets Forum (January 2009)