Marsden’s Sajhad Bassam, Key and Michael and John Chow at the July 20 Wellington hotel opening. Photo / supplied
Ex-Prime Minister John Key, son Max and brothers Michael and John Chow’s new business has raised $50 million of an intended $100m.
A spokesperson for Stonewood Key Capital, announced in February, said the
business was well on its way to achieving its goal.
Stonewood Key wants to attract $100m in 18 months to develop around 500 new homes over some years.
“In regard to the partnership with Sir John, they have reached 50 per cent of the investment goal so far,” the Australian-based spokeswoman for Chow Group said.
Stonewood Key Capital aims to raise money from qualifying or wholesale investors in schemes which Te Mana Tātai Hokohoko the Financial Markets Authority warns people should take professional advice on before entering.
John Chow, a Stonewood director, said six months ago that the new fund was formed to raise $100m in less than two years to develop around 500 new homes annually.
On February 15, he said that $20m already was pledged to Stonewood Key Capital and would be used on projects underway in St Heliers, Glenn Innes and Wai o Taiki Bay.
The Key’s family property development company, MTK Capital, had already been developing homes by the time Stone Key Capital was formed.
Separately, the Chows own national house-builder Stonewood Group, which is one of the top 10 in New Zealand for the number of new homes built annually.
In another new move, the Chow’s Stonewood Group opened a new Wellington hotel on July 20 and plan a new Auckland one.
A statement from Stonewood Group said it had completed and launched the Microtel by Wyndham Wellington Central last month.
The hotel operations are separate to Stonewood Key Capital. However, Sir John Key was pictured with the Chows at the Wellington opening this month at the opening ceremony.
Stonewood had completed four hotels: Park Ave Residence Auckland in 2014, Oaks Hotel Wellington in 2019, Pullman Hotel Rotorua in 2020 and the latest in Wellington.
It is now planning an Auckland hotel.
Michael Chow, executive director, said Stonewood Group owns all the hotels but does not manage these properties. They have arrangements with various operators for that side of the business.
“Stonewood Group develops the hotels and creates new product. The Pullman Hotel Rotorua is the first five-star hotel in the Bay of Plenty,” he said.
Asked about Sir John Key’s involvement with the hotels and if that was financial, Michael Chow said: “He has opened Pullman Hotel Rotorua and Microtel Wellington and it was an honour to have him to open our hotel to the public.”
“With the completion and recent launch of Stonewood Group’s fifth hotel – the Microtel by Wyndham Wellington Central – executive director Michael Chow is looking to grow the commercial building arm of Stonewood Group, with a new project about to commence in Auckland’s CBD and preliminary planning underway for two more buildings in Wellington,” a statement out last week said.
Stonewood Group have completed Park Ave Residence Auckland in 2014, Oaks Hotel Wellington in 2019, Pullman Hotel Rotorua in 2020 and Microtel by Wyndham Wellington Central just recently.
“Tourism is a key contributor to the New Zealand economy and our goal is to have a hotel property in each major New Zealand city. With the phased border opening, tourism is back on track and is a lucrative sector for investors and we plan to grow this aspect of our development by another 15 per cent over the next three years,” Michael Chow said.
The brothers started in hotels in 1999, buying their first commercial property which was the old ANZ building at 73 Courtenay Pl, Wellington.
Not all has gone well with hotels for them. For example, in Auckland in 2011, the Chow’s 124-year-old Palace Hotel building was reduced to rubble after large cracks appeared in its walls.
The Chows bought the Victoria Street West pub for $3.3m in 2008 and were renovating it for use as a brothel, to be ready in time for the Rugby World Cup when the council stop-work order was issued.
A council commission report later found that the owners had failed to ensure the building was being safely renovated.
The 161-unit High-rise Victoria Residences now stands on that site at 75 Victoria St West.
But the brothers said last week their business would expand when they refurbish 280 Queen St, Auckland and add five levels to the mixed-use office and retail building.
“Our next hotel property development will be in Christchurch by the famous international golf course and we’re also in the preliminary planning stage for two commercial projects in Wellington,” Michael Chow said.
Stonewood Group has total assets of $800m.
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