Brandeis International Business School

Shuliang Ni, MA'14: foundations for global success

Tell me about your Brandeis International Business School internship.

I did a nine-week summer internship at ElmTree Funds LLC, a private equity real estate investment firm focused on commercial real estate net lease, sale-leaseback and build-to-suit opportunities.

How did your internship mesh with your Brandeis studies?

I have a passion for real estate and my career goal was to be an expert in the real estate sector of a financial advisory industry. ElmTree, a real estate investment firm as well as a private equity fund, was a great place for me to gain insight into the U.S. real estate industry and to take advantage of my financial background at the same time.

What did your work there involve?

I reviewed case studies of properties ElmTree and its predecessor fund had acquired. I read investment memos and historical data; wrote summaries for each case, providing a project overview, investment opportunity and strategy and made a slideshow presentation for my supervisor to use when introducing a fund’s historical performance to investors. I developed a deeper understanding of how to build up practical models, how to prepare an investment memo and how to comprehensively evaluate a real estate investment opportunity.

I also did due diligence work for ElmTree’s potential deals. I learned how to do research on a property and its tenants by using information from brokers, credit agencies and other online resources and run a model to get the key ratios. I completed two investment memos for potential deals in North Carolina and China, which provided a reference to ElmTree’s investment committee. And as an analyst intern, I was responsible for doing market research for the ElmTree Newsletter and sending online news reports every day.

What insights did you gain about the international real estate field?

I attended the ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers) convention in Boston and witnessed the process of making a deal happen in the real world. The most surprising thing for me was the huge scale of the net lease market in the U.S., which is about $2 trillion. However, few people in China run or understand this business, and I recommended that ElmTree to do some marketing in China. I also translated a 28-page flip book into Chinese to help with promotion in China. These experiences prepared me for my current position with China Huarong Financial Leasing.

Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance
Class of 2014

Analyst, China Huarong Financial Leasing Co., Ltd.

Previous Experience
Summer Analyst, Morgan Stanley

Undergraduate degree
BA in finance, Zhejiang University

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