There has been much talk lately about the housing affordability crisis in Toronto. It dominates radio call-in shows and political campaigns, so it is noteworthy when there is some action matching all that talk – such as the recent announcement of an 11.6-acre site at 3300 Rutherford Road in Vaughan specifically designed as a large scale master-planned community to increase the supply of housing and improve affordability.

This is the debut investment of KIN Capital's new equity arm following its recent partnership announcement with Mivtach Shamir Holdings Ltd. Elad Canada will lead the development of the Rutherford site with the support of its partners Kadima and Ellsworth Group. The site is in close proximity to Highway 400 and the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre – an optimal site to create a substantial amount of new housing in a fast-growing sub-market in the GTA.

Transit City Condos Phase 1 at the Vaughan Metropolitan Centre, image by UT Forum contributor Undead

“It’s no surprise that there has been a general lack of affordability as a result of a supply-demand imbalance in the GTA,” says Jacob Iftah, Co-founder and Managing Partner of KIN Capital. “Therefore, KIN Capital Partners has been heavily focused on increasing the supply through large-scale development projects in the more affordable areas of the city, with close proximity to highways and transit.”

KIN Capital Partners Inc. is a global real estate investor, asset manager and advisory firm based in Toronto. It was founded two years ago by Jacob Iftah together with his co-founder Galia Feiler. Jacob has an interesting and inspiring personal backstory, having arrived in Canada ten years ago from Israel with no formal prior contacts or education yet built his company and reputation to now have long-established and trusted relationships with top-tier real estate investors and operators worldwide. He also founded four non-profit organizations focused on diversity and inclusion in the developer community.

The announcement of the affordable housing community in Vaughan comes after KIN Capital and Mivtach Shamir Holdings recent launch of a large equity investment platform focused on development projects in the GTA. The ‘KIN Investments’ vehicle is an open-ended platform that is set to deploy substantial amounts of equity with top-tier developers to serve the increasing capital needs of Toronto’s growing real estate market. The partnership is also positioned to be the conduit for Israeli institutions to access the ever-expanding Canadian real estate market to the benefit of both countries.

“We’re thrilled to kick off this partnership and to be working with the creative and well-connected team at KIN Capital Partners,” says Guy Shamir, Deputy CEO, Mivtach Shamir Holdings Ltd., one of the most long-standing and leading holding companies in Israel’s capital markets.  “KIN Capital are on the front lines of creating opportunities and value within the Canadian real estate eco-system.”

“We’ve built this platform to serve the growing capital needs of real estate developers in Canada due to the substantial growth in deals’ size and market demand,” says Iftah. “Over recent years Toronto’s real estate market has started to attract global institutional investors due to its favourable fundamentals and has been elevated on the world stage as a significant opportunity.”

The deployment of substantial equity into the Toronto and Canadian real estate markets is a strong sign of the stability and growth opportunities international investors have confidence in, especially in such a volatile world. The reputation of the country and the city as a ‘safe harbour’ has perhaps never been stronger.

“We are proud of KIN Capital Partner’s remarkable breadth of close relationships with large Israeli private and public institutional capital and top-tier Canadian development companies,” says Galia Feiler, Managing Partner at KIN Capital. “We are uniquely positioned to be the conduit for Israeli institutions to access the ever-expanding Canadian real estate market alongside the best developers and operators in this market.”

The flow of equity and partnerships such as KIN Capital and Mivtach Shamir also is good news for developers and employment in the GTA, as robust development creates good-paying jobs and a healthy economy. 

“Elad Canada continues to be very bullish on the long-term strength of the GTA,” says Rafael Lazer, CEO of Elad Canada. “Vaughan is emerging to be a large urban rejuvenation hub within our market and we’re exited to partner with KIN Capital and Ellsworth and bring our expertise in master-planned communities to this site.”

There is no question the affordable housing crisis is one of the most important issues facing city and provincial leadership, so when committed, experienced private partnerships can step forward with solutions, that’s a positive step forward for all.

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