Snapshots

Seattle’s growth has attracted global attention, pushing foreign investment to new heights

Seattle’s significant economic growth this cycle has not gone unnoticed by foreign investors.

Seattle’s significant economic growth this cycle has not gone unnoticed by foreign investors. Looking to gain exposure to a high-growth market, global capital has poured into Seattle commercial real estate pushing foreign investment to record levels. Cross-border investment (including office, industrial, retail and multifamily) has seen a five-fold increase cycle-over-cycle.

The majority of this investment has targeted the office sector, with 52.8 percent of foreign dollars spent on office product. A number of cross-border investors have been particularly eager to buy office product leased by large technology tenants. Since 2015, offshore investors have spent roughly $1.2 billion on office buildings leased solely to major technology users.

While cross-border capital has come from across the globe this cycle, more than half of foreign volumes can be attributed to Asia-based firms. Gaw Capital of Hong Kong, Mirae Asset of South Korea and Takenaka Corp of Japan have all made major acquisitions in Seattle in recent years.

Source: JLL Research, Real Capital Analytics (transactions larger than $5.0 million); 2018 data is YTD

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