SOURCE: Key International, Inc.

Key International, Inc.

October 10, 2012 13:16 ET

The South Florida Real Estate Market Rebound

Key International Turns Adversity Into Opportunity Through Perseverance, Strategic Alliance

MIAMI, FL--(Marketwire - Oct 10, 2012) -  The old proverb, "the bigger they are, the harder they fall," certainly applied to the Miami real estate market five years ago as the once red-hot real estate boom went bust. As a result of the meltdown, many real estate developers went out of business while others simply packed up and left the Miami market altogether. However, smart developers and investors saw opportunity in adversity and began playing the "developer shuffle" -- buying well-located parcels out of foreclosure for pennies on the dollar.

This was just one of the strategies implemented by Key International, a Miami-based real estate development company, as it proactively adjusted its business model at the onset of the real estate downturn. Strategically, it formed a partnership with 13th Floor Investments, a Miami-based real estate private equity firm focused on opportunistic, value-add investments. Together, the partnership has sought to take advantage of promising investment and development projects across South Florida.

"Key International has been in Miami for more than 40 years, so we've persevered through a few up-and-down cycles in the market," said Inigo Ardid, vice president. "Our experience and our tenacity means we're better equipped than most other developers to not only adapt for market volatility, but also react to opportunities that may result. Our partnership with 13th Floor only strengthens these capabilities."

Also during the downturn, 13th Floor Investments developed a niche specialty of strategically buying distressed and value-added properties. "At our core, we are value investors, thriving on our ability to appropriately assess risk and reward in complex, special situations," says Arnaud Karsenti, founder. 

Ironically, Key International encountered 13th Floor Investments while competing for a deal shortly after the market crash. The two companies quickly realized that rather than competing, a strategic partnership would immensely benefit both parties. 

Combined, the team is comprised of young and aggressive professionals who are Ivy-league educated and approach the real estate market with sharp, creative minds. Their overarching tenet is to focus on real estate investing with a value investment philosophy.

The benefit of this philosophy has been apparent in recent years, as the partnership has built momentum in the market across three separate ventures, and the two firms continue to explore new opportunities together.

In June 2011, the two companies purchased the partially completed NoBe Bay condominium in Miami Beach. They subsequently completed the construction and re-branded it as Eden House, the first luxury condominium from the iconic Eden Roc Resort, which is also controlled by Key International. Last July, they purchased 1010 Brickell, a parcel in the heart of the thriving Brickell neighborhood in downtown Miami. Most recently, the pair acquired a parcel at 400 Sunny Isles Boulevard in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, where they have received approvals to build a luxury condominium project. 

With construction cranes once again returning to the South Florida skyline, Key International and 13th Floor Investments have emerged as the leading development team in the local real estate market. 

About Key International
Since the 1970s, Key International has acquired and developed much of South Florida's premiere real estate including many of the area's most high-profile locations such as the South Beach Marriott, Eden Roc Hotel, Ivy Condominiums and Mint Condominiums. Key International has distinguished itself as one of the area's most renowned developers, bringing an international focus to South Florida. From commercial property in all the right locations, to the most luxurious residential addresses, Key is at the leading edge of Florida's development community. For more information, call (305) 377-1001, or visit

About 13th Floor Investments
13th Floor Investments is a Miami-based real estate investment and management firm focused on value-oriented opportunities in the Florida market. As its name suggests, it typically seeks value in off-market and less-traveled special situations. Over the past several years, the firm has acquired approximately $300 million in real estate assets across numerous transactions. Most of its deals have consisted of non-performing note purchases, developer inventory, and distressed bond trades. As a fully vertically integrated operator, 13th Floor generally seeks assets where substantial value can be added through redevelopment, entitlement, and construction processes. The 13th Floor team consists of experienced investment and asset management professionals that are dedicated to identifying and extracting risk-adjusted value for investors. For more information, call (786) 220-0460, or visit

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