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Stephen Ross and Tiki Barber Team Up

12/7/2007 --

Ross School benefactor joins forces with former NFL star and current NBC correspondent to develop affordable housing throughout the nation.

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—A joint venture to boost the nation's stock of high-quality, affordable housing has been announced by Ross School of Business benefactor Stephen M. Ross and Tiki Barber, who will deliver the Ross School's annual MLK Day lecture, "Character Isn't an Audible: Growth with Integrity," next month.

Ross' Related Companies and Barber's Tiki Ventures will team up with Centerline Capital Group, the leading financier of affordable housing in the country, to purchase and extensively renovate older, existing affordable housing developments as a means to protect, improve and extend housing options in the United States.

"Related and Centerline are proud to partner with Tiki Barber to forge this very important initiative," said Ross (BBA '62), chairman of both Related and Centerline and whose $100 million gift to the Ross School in 2004 is enabling the school to build a new state-of-the-art facility tailor-made for the school's distinctive action-based learning. "Related has been at the forefront of affordable housing development for 35 years, and this venture continues this legacy. Investments in affordable housing are investments in our communities and working families across the country."

Barber, chairman and founder of Tiki Ventures, is looking forward to working with Ross and Related Companies to "create thriving communities where families can flourish."

"A safe, affordable place to live is the first step toward building a dream," said the former New York Giant and current NBC Today Show correspondent. "A secure home leads to a more enriched life, with better education, health and employment opportunities."

The first phase of the venture consists of the acquisition and refurbishment of more than 3,500 residential units for low-to-moderate income families in North Carolina and Virginia, Barber's home state. Centerline Capital Group will finance about $150 million of the project, which will progress over the next three to four years. The venture is also pursuing several opportunities throughout the nation.

Related Companies was founded by Ross in 1972 with the goal of financing and developing government-assisted, multi-family housing. As the company has grown into a national leader across a spectrum of real estate capabilities, it has maintained its commitment to preserving and developing housing for working families and seniors. Related has financed, developed or acquired more than 300,000 units of affordable housing across the nation, making it the leading developer and sixth-largest manager of affordable housing in the country.

Tiki Ventures pursues business opportunities in real estate, entertainment, sports marketing and media with an emphasis on "giving back" through community involvement, humanitarian aid and educational programs that benefit the economically disadvantaged.

For more information about the joint venture, contact Candice Bruder, (646) 215-6899, or Joanna Rose, (212) 801-3902.

For more information, contact:
Bernie DeGroat, (734) 936-1015 or 647-1847,