In August 2016, LCR Capital – a USA private equity firm that helps HNWs around the world acquire EB-5 investment visas through investment of $500k into a Dunkin’ Donuts or Surf Club Four Seasons Hotel Fund – opened its South African office in Cape Town. Cultivate was brought on board to educate local high net-worths about the benefits of what an EB-5 visa affords them and their immediate families, how the application process works, to drive enquiries via its website and sign-ups to attend one of two EB5 visa seminars.
Dunkin’ Donuts was set to launch its stores in South Africa in October. Following on from the success of Burger King and other international brands openings in SA, we knew that the Dunkin’ name would be of interest to the local retail and business media. Coupled with doing our homework to understand which media were covering the investment visa topic, and in what capacity, we developed our launch story around the LCR Capital Dunkin’ Donuts Fund.
By creating a media pack that explained how wealthy South Africans could acquire USA citizenship by investing through LCR Capital to help grow the Dunkin’ brand in the USA, we approached relevant journalists, some of whom had covered investment visas before, with the story and secured quality exposure in Sake24, Biznews, moneyweb, Fin24, Business Report and The Citizen, among others.
Once the initial education around EB5 and LCR Capital had been rolled-out, we focused our efforts on garnering interest for its first South African investment visa seminar. Held in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town at Grant Thornton, it aimed to educate guests about the EB5 visa programme as well as the Dunkin’ Donuts Fund.
We undertook a combination of paid and earned efforts, developing and running a native advertising campaign on Businesslive and Financialmail.co.za, arranging a podcast with Alec Hogg on Biznews and Siki Mgabadeli on SAFM as well as secured a CNBC Africa interview with LCR in Johannesburg to drive awareness and call to action.
Following on the initial interest among HNW South Africans, LCR Capital wanted to repeat the seminar concept again in March 2017 alongside the launch of its Surf Club Four Seasons Hotel Fund. We were brought on board to assist again and, to assist in driving web traffic, teamed-up with iClick Marketing to drive an extensive Google Ads campaign. We meantime assisted in the development of a new .co.za website so as to enable higher conversions and use as a content repository.
Thousands of users have been driven to the.co.za website to date, with clear spikes being recorded as media was published or a campaign broke on relevant channels. From this, over 100 HNWs have approached LCR Capital directly to request more information via a ‘Contact Us’ form on the .co.za site and/ or to attend one of the two EB5 seminars. To date, LCR has initiated the application process for those South African investors who were liquid and ready to take the steps to immigrate themselves or to enable their children to do so.