RevOZ Speaker Series Recap: Dan Kowalski in Newport Beach

Hot on the heels of the issuance of the latest round of regulatory guidance, RevOZ Capital hosted Counselor to the Treasury Secretary Dan Kowalski for an inspiring conversation about Opportunity Zones on Friday April 26th in Newport Beach.  Over 100 invited guests filled the room to hear from Mr. Kowalski, the architect of the US Treasury Department's efforts to create and administer the new program.  The event was one of two events that day hosted by RevOZ Capital and Cal OZ, the leading non-profit organization for California's Opportunity Zone stakeholders.


RevOZ Founders Alex Bhathal and Ryan Parkin each had speaking roles and shared relevant experiences with the assembled group.  Jeff Sause from HFF gave a real estate capital markets overview and set the stage for Kunal Merchant of Cal OZ to interview Mr. Kowalski in a fireside chat format.


Thereafter, the attendees had the chance to ask Mr. Kowalski the questions that they thought were most important and expressed their thoughts on the Opportunity Zone program and how it could be improved.


Of the topics discussed, Mr. Kowalski went into depth on the issues that have been most impacting those real estate industry—


·         Depreciation recapture on sale of the underlying property;

·         An investor’s ability to exclude gains upon the sale of an asset;

·         How the recent set of regulations provided the clarity that operating companies needed to operate in Opportunity Zones;

·         Importance of State conformance to the Federal Opportunity Zone program;

·         How leased property will now qualify for Opportunity Zone purposes;

·         Changes to the requirements for property to qualify for Opportunity Zone purposes, such as vacant real estate, land, and FF&E; and

·         How city and other local officials should be adapting to best implement the program for their constituents.


After the later event held in Newport Beach, the attendees participated in a networking event where they had the chance to mingle with their industry peers and talk with Mr. Kowalski one-on-one. Many took the chance to talk with Mr. Kowalski in this casual environment and get to personally know him. Many had the opportunity to hear Mr. Kowalski’s personal views on why he took such a strong leadership role in overseeing the development and implementation of the Opportunity Zone program. Others inquired into what type of economic stimulus that he and his team envisioned throughout the implementation of the Opportunity Zone program.


All in all, it was a great learning opportunity and chance to stay on the forefront of the emerging Opportunity Zone industry where the stakeholders of the program had the chance to hear directly from the leaders overseeing the development of the program.


If you would like to hear more about what took place at the event, the items discussed, or how the new regulations are impacting the industry in general, please contact the RevOZ team.

Lisa Merage