Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Apprentice TV Show star to share moneymaking secrets

By Jon Ann Steinmetz
Mercury News
Billionaire investor/TV personality/multitasker Donald Trump and other noted rich people will share their moneymaking secrets at a mammoth two-day real estate conference later this month in San Francisco.
A staggering 61,000 people are expected at the Learning Annex Real Estate Wealth Expo at Moscone Center on March 25 and 26.
``For whatever reason, I attract a lot of people,'' Trump mused in a brief (brief meaning seven-minute) chat last week. ``We talk about entrepreneurship, we talk about money, we talk about making money, we talk about lots of other things, and the response has been phenomenal,'' he said. ``Every time I do it, it just gets bigger.''
The San Francisco weekend, with 72 seminars over 24 total hours, also will feature Robert and Kim Kiyosaki, authors of ``Rich Dad, Poor Dad: The Secrets of Wealth;'' personal finance expert Suze Orman and motivational speaker Anthony Robbins. Registration information is available at www.learning annex.com.
Not surprisingly, Trump the real estate mogul has a rosy view of his chosen field, in both the residential and commercial arenas.
``As long as interest rates stay where they are now, or relatively where they are now, I think that real estate is going to be a great investment,'' he said.
Some edited excerpts of Trump's other observations:
• On Silicon Valley's many obsolete office buildings: ``You'll have conversions to residential like they did in New York, I'm sure. For those that don't do that, it creates a much better market for the commercial. So I'm sure that many of your buildings will be converted to residential, because it's a great area, but they built too much.''
• On Sobrato Development's strategy to let its 380,000-square-foot downtown San Jose tower remain vacant until it finds a single tenant: ``I think its fine. They're a smart firm and they know what they're doing, and I think that's a way to go. You could also do individual floors, you could do individual sections, but I'm sure that's a very respected firm and they'll figure it out.''
• On the Silicon Valley Market overall: ``It'll be back. Like everything else it had a very big hit. For a period of time it was Fantasyland, and now it's doing better than it was awhile ago, and it'll get better yet.''
• On high-rise residential development: ``It's always more practical to go up high, up to a certain point. I'm doing a 92-story building in Chicago -- that gets expensive. But if you do up to 28 stories it's very practical. It's always great in terms of your land costs if you can go up high.''
• On whether he has a project brewing in San Francisco: ``I'm considering a building there. I can't tell you. I'd love to, but I can't.''


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