RELATED: BRW Rich List 2015 - Australia's Richest Property Moguls
All nine of those who earned their wealth in the property industry were men, with a combined estimated wealth of $574 million which continues to rise.
It is well known that Australia weathered the global financial crisis well in comparison to other western countries, but robust property prices in combination with historically low interest rates have driven a strong increase in average and median wealth figures.
ranked at number 17 on the Young Rich List with a wealth estimated at $113 million, and is the owner of BPM Construction and Development, which has made a name for itself through the development of luxury apartments for high-end downsizers.
Mr Hallinan is not fearful of mutterings from the Reserve Bank of Australia about a property bubble and the implications of over-enthusiastic lending practices.
“I’ve been in the business since 1996 and I’ve been told this is a bubble since 1996,” Mr Hallinan said.
Comparing the Young Rich List with BRW’s Rich 200, just 9 per cent of the Young List were in property, while 26.5 per cent of the Rich 200 earned the majority of their wealth from property.
Some of the young property moguls slipped in their positions on the list in 2014, but all entrants bar one increased their wealth over the past year with some more than doubling their overall value position.
BPM Construction and Development Group
This year, Jonathan Hallinan is worth $113 million, up from $75 million last year. He has boosted his position on the list by one. We talked to Hallinan in July this year and he told us that in the next ten years we could expect to see BPM continuing to build world class and iconic buildings with beautiful interiors and being one of the leaders in the market Australia wide. BPM are also looking to expand internationally, aiming to be part of the LA market in the next few years.
Metro Property Development
This is Luke Hartman
’s debut appearance on the list and the 38 year-old has accumulated $92 million in wealth. He is the chief executive and co-founder of Metro, which focuses on residential projects. Metro has developments in Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. Before co-founding Metro in 2010 with David Devine and Ken Woodley, Hartman worked with Mirvac and Devine. Metro has about $1.5 billion of residential projects in development across four states.
Paul Fridman has fallen in rank, down from 24 last year, but has increased his wealth from $70 million up to $78 million. Fridman started Fridcorp in 1997, when he was 20. Over the past 12 months, Fridcorp has expended into the Sydney market with the $145 million Eve Apartments project in Erskineville. 141 apartments were sold off the plan in one day; $100 million worth of stock was sold in two hours. Fridman has become less enthused about Melbourne projects as oversupply around the CBD becomes a growing concern.
Tim Gurner has increased his wealth substantially from $26 million last year, up to $77 million this year. The 32 year-old launched his own development company in 2013 after a stint developing with Morry Schwartz
. We spoke to Gurner in July this year and he told us that he started GURNERTM because he wanted to take the design quality to the next level. When asked about his major upcoming project FV, in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, Gurner told us that the move was inspired by diversification and making the most of a maturing market.
37 year-old Ronnie Elhaj had accumulated a wealth of $63 million through his 32% stake in Western Australian property development company Nicheliving
. Elhaj is the director of marketing, sales and acquisitions and specialises in off-the-plan property sales. At the age of 20, Cairo-born Elhaj was operating his first business, which imported and exported alcohol. Elhaj then moved into real estate, working with mentor Paul Bitdorf before they co-founded the Australian Property Alliance in 2002, which has become Nicheliving. Elhaj also operates an online business network, Commerity.com.
Patrick Coughlan made a name for himself through investment in Sydney pubs. The 40 year-old’s fortune as increased significantly in the past year, from $26 million in 2013 up to $42 million this year. Coughlan is now itching though to leave his hometown to try his luck in New York. The plan is to use a similar blueprint to what has worked for him in Sydney, where his Riversdale Group bought underperforming pubs and renovated them to add value. Coughlan co-founded the pub fund with business partner Rod Kelly, with each owning 10%, along with other high-profile investors.
Paul Fischmann has thrived in Sydney’s booming property sector, using it as an opportunity to offload some of his hotels in the past year. Notably, Fischmann sold the 1888 Hotel in Pyrmont to a Hong Kong investor for $33 million and another in Potts Point earlier this year. Fischmann started 8Hotels in 2004, previously owning a chain of backpacker hostels. Currently, Fischmann’s 8Hotels Group is building a hotel near Sydney Airport.
38 year-old Marcus Gilmore is the owner of the Newman Hotel, which is near the iron ore mines of Western Australia’s Pilbara region and has benefited greatly from the mining boom. Gilmore purchased the hotel for $7 million in 2008 and invested a further $5 million to upgrade the restaurant and add more than 100 new rooms tailored to mining company clientele. The hotel’s value fell this year, and Gilmore reduced his prices in response to cost saving by mining companies. Gilmore has also built MLG Realty, which boasts a large residential property portfolio in Perth.
Nick Georgalis this year made his debut appearance in the Young Rich List. Georgalis is the founder and sole shareholder of Geocon, which is a property development and construction company that is also responsible for operating Abode Hotels
. The 38 year-old started his career working for building firms, such as Lend Lease, before founding Geocon in 2007. His company has worked on townhouses, but there are plans to build Canberra’s tallest residential building, the Wayfarer Apartments, in Belconnen.