Top 5 Business Plan Writers

EB5 Investors Magazine is pleased to announce the Top 5 Business Plan Writers. To be eligible, distinguished business plan writers needed to draft business plans for groups involved in EB-5 funding.

For more information or to contact any of these professionals, we invite you to view their listings at www.EB5Investors.com/directories.


Strategic Element Inc. / Altytude Advisers

Phil Cohen is the president of Strategic Element Inc., and a vice president at Altytude Advisers. Strategic Element has been offering business plans and feasibility studies to the EB-5 industry since 2010, and has participated in offerings raising over $3.5 billion in EB-5 capital. In 2018, Cohen expanded his involvement in the EB-5 industry by participating in the development and launch of Altytude Advisors to address EB-5 redeployment. He regularly speaks at and participates in EB-5 events and conferences including EB5 Investors Magazine, iGlobal Forum and AILA. He was also the founder of The EB-5 Definitive Guide.

Why did you get involved in the EB-5 industry?

Creating jobs, facilitating the American Dream for immigrants, and supporting business growth. What could be better? 

What new types of projects and trends are you seeing in the EB-5 industry following the pandemic and reauthorization?

In March of 2022, the switch was flipped back to “on” in the EB-5 regional center program. Since then, there has been a significant jump in new inquiries, both for the development of new projects and new regional centers.



William Dean is vice president of immigration at Masterplans, an Inc. 500 business plan writing company founded in 2002. He directs a team of market research and finance experts creating filing-ready business plans for clients referred by 300+ law offices. Dean specializes in reviewing client materials and RFEs to help E-2, L-1A, EB-2, and EB-5 applicants obtain their visas. He first encountered EB-5 in 2008, and since that time has overseen almost 2,500 visa business plans. Dean is a frequent speaker at immigration conferences and on podcasts. He graduated with honors from Brown University and was a paralegal at Stoel Rives before joining Masterplans.

Why did you get involved in the EB-5 industry?

I started at Masterplans in 2005 as a writer, making business plans for clients seeking bank loans or angel investors. As more people inquired about E-2 and L-1 visas, I pivoted to those projects, educating myself on the different criteria and refining our deliverables for immigration candidates. In 2010, I prepared the business plan that a group of Florida investors used to set up a new regional center with USCIS. By then I was focused exclusively on immigration plans and business development, networking with attorneys and training our team on the popular visa categories where a business plan strengthens the case.

What new types of projects and trends are you seeing in the EB-5 industry following the pandemic and reauthorization?

For us, the reauthorization hasn’t resulted in much change. I’m sure it’s been a headache for our past regional center clients, but Masterplans’ direct investment projects carry on like normal, just with more clarity now (and of course higher minimums). The pooled directs that were popular last summer have disappeared. As in years past, the most noticeable impact continues to be an increase in other types of projects – both for developers no longer relying on EB-5 in their capital stack, and for immigrants embracing E-2, NIW, or intracompany transferee methods to come to the U.S.


Lucid Professional Writing

Suzanne Lazicki is a business writer and consultant specializing in the EB-5 program. In a decade since founding Lucid Professional Writing, Lazicki has written hundreds of business plans for regional center and direct EB-5 projects, and a variety of plans and market reports for non-immigrant investments. She holds a BA in English literature (summa cum laude) and a Master of Business Administration. Lazicki runs blog.lucidtext.com, providing EB-5 news, data, and analysis to readers around the world. Her published work includes articles on business plans in the third and fourth editions of Immigration Options for Investors & Entrepreneurs, published by AILA.

Why did you get involved in the EB-5 industry?

I got involved in the EB-5 industry in 2009, when EB-5 represented hope for U.S. projects struggling with the recession, and for immigrants shut out of other categories and countries. I recognized a niche that fit my education and international background, and a challenge. As a business plan writer, I strive to bridge the gap between theory and practice, and to use my experience and expertise to help make EB-5 work for entrepreneurs and investors.

What new types of projects and trends are you seeing in the EB-5 industry following the pandemic and reauthorization?

I do not see isolated new trends, but an EB-5 2.0 that is entirely different from the field I worked in from 2009 to 2021. The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act of 2022 broke with the past and is shaping a new industry. Before USCIS updated their guidance, I saw my large regional center clients scrambling to apply for newly defined designation, and my small-scale and pooled direct clients disappear. I am fielding many inquiries about infrastructure and rural-area projects, newly incentivized by reserved visas. Non-TEA projects are newly viable, given the narrow investment differential and uncertainty about how USCIS will implement high-unemployment TEA designation. Every aspect of EB-5 is in transition, with new forms and new policy forthcoming. I hope to see a trend of escrow arrangements that protect investors who choose to start the process during this period of extreme flux and uncertainty.


Pinnacle Plan Writing

Marisa Marconi is the founder and lead consultant at Pinnacle Plan Writing. She has 15 years of experience in the business planning industry and has developed thousands of plans for EB-5, E-2, and L-1 visa petitions. She works closely with issuers, investors, regional centers, attorneys, and industry groups, providing consulting, project management, and plan development for both direct and regional center projects. Marconi is honored to have been named one of EB5 Investors Magazine’s Top 5 Business Plan Writers since 2015. Marconi earned her degree from Columbia University and now resides with her wife and son in Portland, Oregon.

Why did you get involved in the EB-5 industry?

I started focusing on immigration and EB-5 around 2013-2014. As USCIS codified its requirements for EB-5 business plans, it became apparent that issuers and project sponsors would benefit from professional writers that understood the EB-5 program and market. Over the years, I have become more involved in the industry and am grateful to work closely with many of the esteemed professionals and groups that make the industry what it is today. This work is meaningful to me, not only because EB-5 projects create jobs for communities, but because my plans contribute to helping immigrants find their place in the U.S.

What new types of projects and trends are you seeing in the EB-5 industry following the pandemic and reauthorization?

Despite finally achieving long term reauthorization, the market feels more stymied today than ever. The lack of guidance and clarity from USCIS has created uncertainty despite finally having the assurance that the program will continue. It’s difficult to track trends while in limbo, but I do think that projects will be more diversified than in the past, thanks in part to the set asides for rural and infrastructure projects as well as some precedence that was set by operations-heavy direct projects that dominated the market during the regional center program lapse.


Baker Tilly

With more than a decade of EB-5 experience, Tom Martin leads the firm’s robust EB-5 practice. He chiefly works with professional writers, economists, analysts, and researchers to ensure that business plans and economic analysis reports are properly written using industry accepted methodologies. Martin has overseen the completion of more than 1,500 business plans across various industries; from billion-dollar real estate projects in New York City to small solar farms in rural Indiana. He serves as a strategic advisor to real estate developers, regional centers, attorneys, community development advocates, and public sector officials. He has spoken on EB-5 topics at various international and domestic conferences.

Why did you get involved in the EB-5 industry?

I have been working exclusively in the EB-5 industry for over a decade and got involved in EB-5 when I saw an opportunity to assist clients that found the capital markets challenging coming out of the recession. EB-5 offered a unique solution to facilitate economic growth through an immigration channel that was both challenging and rewarding. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the hundreds of clients I have had the pleasure of meeting through the years, and it has been a privilege to see these utilize EB-5 capital to spur economic growth and job creation.

What new types of projects and trends are you seeing in the EB-5 industry following the pandemic and reauthorization?

The industry has responded strongly to the RIA set aside visa categories, specifically for projects in rural areas. We are working with a number of clients to prepare offerings in rural locations throughout the country so that investors can also take advantage of priority processing. Asset classes that were impacted significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as the hospitality sector, are recovering and seeking to move forward with development using EB-5 capital. We are also assisting clients utilizing serial raises in unique projects using the direct EB-5 path where single investors invest into a chain of individual locations.

EB5Investors.com Staff

EB5Investors.com Staff