Thank you for joining us for Chapter 2 of our special series on Southeast Regional Center, LLC (“SRC”).  In Chapter 1, we introduced our firm, walked through its 13-year successful track record with the US EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, and briefly discussed some of the elements that has powered our “Winning Formula” across time. 

It is time to explore the factors behind our Regional Center’s success and more importantly, the success of our investors.  

At SRC, we always review potential projects through the lens of putting our investors first.  This principle is the heart of our firm’s mission and guides everything we do.  

That is why we take great care in selecting attractive projects backed by solid project developers.  Our investment methodology follows a repeatable process that always keeps our investors first.  We will outline our process across Part 1 and Part 2 of this Chapter. 

And along the way, we will provide concrete examples of how and why our most recent project with Ajin USA passed all of our tests.  In doing so, we will demonstrate how any investor could apply these principles to maximize the chances of success when making the final EB-5 project selection. 

Project Location

First, we screen for an attractive investment opportunity based on its location.  Locations that rise to the top are usually business-friendly, with low taxes, a growing population and workforce, and lots of interest from new companies and corporations looking to expand or relocate.  Crucially, we also focus on whether a project is located inside or outside a “Targeted Employment Area (TEA)” as this factor has special meaning for the EB-5 Program.  

If a project is located in a “Rural TEA” and meets all the other criteria of the EB-5 Program, then investors will enjoy access to a protected number of visas that are allocated just for Rural TEA projects.

This is especially important for investors coming from nations that have a high demand for US visas.  Keep in mind, the EB-5 Program allocates visa availability by nation using a per-country limit system, where no single country can receive more than about 7% of the 10,000 annual visas available to the entire EB-5 Program.  

 Twenty percent of the entire annual visa allotment (2,000 visas) may only be issued for projects located in Rural TEAs.  This new feature, which was passed in the Reform and Integrity Act of 2022, lowers the risk of getting stuck in a backlog especially for immigrants from countries with very high EB-5 visa demand, such as China.

  • We introduced Ajin USA in Chapter 1 of the series.  SRC and Ajin have enjoyed a strong relationship for more than a decade, and all of the projects we have pursued with them have been located in Rural TEAs.
  • Our latest project with Ajin USA, the Joon Georgia, Inc. factory in Bulloch County, Georgia, is again located in a Rural TEA.
  • This means that the Joon Georgia project qualifies for the Rural TEA visa set-aside pool, benefitting many participating investors, especially investors from countries with very high visa demand. 

Project Industry

Next, we assess the current economic and geopolitical conditions and how they impact a particular project’s industry.  Like most investors, we seek out projects within industries that have a strong near-term and long-term outlook.  

While that may seem obvious, we take our industry analysis very seriously because we want to select projects that:

  1. Can benefit from market tailwinds while also resisting market headwinds.  The best projects “sell themselves” when it comes to the business plan and why the project’s industry is positioned to thrive in multiple economic scenarios.
  2. Represent industries or technologies that are in the national interest.  This underwriting point is more subtle and unique to the EB-5 Program.  Because the USCIS is an agent of America’s executive branch, we have sometimes seen the agency give preference to projects that are viewed as critical to US national interests. For example, if “Project A” is a luxury ski resort, and “Project B” is a large-scale manufacturer of clean-energy technology, it is more likely that the USCIS would process Project B in a faster manner simply because Project B stands to yield output that is directly aligned with US national interests. 
    • The Joon Georgia, Inc. factory in Bulloch County, Georgia, is a critical supplier to Hyundai’s new electric vehicle plant in next door Bryan County, Georgia.  (
    • Hyundai located its USD 5.5 billion plant in America because the country’s executive and legislative branch has signaled the importance of electric vehicles in the Inflation and Reduction Act of 2022, which provides tax credits for purchases of US-built EVs. 
    • Hyundai must have Joon Georgia’s output to produce its EVs.   This means that the Joon Georgia project has a direct role in the success of one of the largest producers of EVs in the world and, therefore, an indirect role in the health of this critical industry in the United States.
    • America is experiencing a broad-based renaissance in domestic manufacturing across a variety of industries in addition to electric vehicles.  Joon Georgia’s participation in this rebound may be helpful not only for EB-5 program processing but may also put the project in a better position from a financial perspective as well. 

Company / Developer

Our project selection process also considers the quality, track record and character of the company responsible for the project, often known as the project “Developer” in the EB-5 industry. 

In Chapter 1, we detailed how important our relationship with Ajin USA has been to the success of our investors.  There are three main reasons this is true. 

  1. Ajin USA, its leadership, and its workforce are best-in-class.  This is one of the reasons why Ajin USA has been one of Hyundai’s most important US suppliers for more than 40 years.  Ajin USA is extremely good at what it does – their product quality control is state-of-the-art.  The quality of the company’s culture is just as good. The values of integrity, transparency and hard work permeate the company internally at all levels.
  2. The working relationship between Ajin USA and SRC has deepened over the years through shared successes and doing the right thing for our investors.  As the Developer, Ajin USA could be focused only on the success of their projects. But their company values include a deep passion and concern for the well-being of our EB-5 investors.  This has been true since the first project and it continues to be true now. 
  3. Finally, as mentioned in Chapter 1, the formula developed by Ajin USA and SRC has remained consistent in terms of project parameters, investment safeguards, investment terms and an unwavering focus on each investor’s green card application.  There is tremendous power in repeating what is known to work in the risky field of investing, especially when someone’s future citizenship is at stake.  While we always seek to improve on our process over time, SRC and Ajin’s loan model features proprietary elements that have stood the test of time.

More to Come

We will finish Chapter 2’s discussion of the “Winning Formula” in the next article, in which we will explore how we screen for a project’s ability to mitigate risk to the immigration process and financial risk of investment capital.  As always, we hope sharing our story will help our readers gain fresh perspectives on controlling risks and selecting sound investments with the greatest potential for prioritized green card issuance.

Thank you!


The information provided here is not investment, tax or legal advice. You should consult with a licensed professional for advice concerning your specific situation. 

This article is educational and informational, and items including policy, program structures, financial models, feasibility studies, and other documentation may change without notification. 

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