MaxCap and Merrill Lynch's relationship began in 2006 and havealready made more than $135 million in real estate investments inBrazil. "The joint venture will enable us to build a leadinginvestment platform in Brazil," José Paim de Andrade Jr., MacCap'sfounder and CEO, tells, adding that he expects toincrease it "substantially" over the next few years. Paim says thatdue to a "quiet period," he cannot divulge how much total capitalis in the investment vehicle.

He explains that the joint venture looks to invest in areas suchas residential development, retail, the commercial sector, as wellas residential companies. He also explains that the partnershipalready has investments in seven cities throughout Brazil, and arenot looking to invest in any geographic region in particular. "Wehave more of a national focus," he says.

The joint venture's current portfolio includes an ownershipstake in Ecoesfera, a residential developer of environmentallysustainable homes, with whom they are developing 15 projects. Twoof Ecoesfera's most recent development projects are precertified asLEED by the USGBC. The partnership also holds a stake in MaxCasa, aresidential developer, with whom they are currently developingeight projects, branded as MaxHaus. MaxHaus apartments are 70square meters delivered in an open format, which allows purchasersto tailor their apartment into one, two or three bedrooms based ontheir own design. The company offers an affordable product that isflexible and contemporary.

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Natalie Dolce

Natalie Dolce, editor-in-chief of and GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum, is responsible for working with editorial staff, freelancers and senior management to help plan the overarching vision that encompasses, including short-term and long-term goals for the website, how content integrates through the company’s other product lines and the overall quality of content. Previously she served as national executive editor and editor of the West Coast region for and Real Estate Forum, and was responsible for coverage of news and information pertaining to that vital real estate region. Prior to moving out to the Southern California office, she was Northeast bureau chief, covering New York City for Her background includes a stint at InStyle Magazine, and as managing editor with New York Press, an alternative weekly New York City paper. In her career, she has also covered a variety of beats for M magazine, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel,, and Co-Ed magazine. Dolce has also freelanced for a number of publications, including and Museums New York magazine.