Ubertas made headlines last November, when it appointed Mr Mathieson, who had no real estate experience, to a position marketing luxury apartments, increasingly to international investors.
Ubertas managing director Albert Dadon admitted he did not know Mr Mathieson before 2007, but plans “to make him a property star” as he has others in Ubertas, who were also appointed without experience.
Mr Dadon confirmed he spent New Years Eve with his “close friends” Kevin Rudd and Therese Rein, and finds Mr Mathieson “personable with great manners”.
“As far as I’m concerned, we’re a private company and I can employ whoever I want,” Mr Dadon said.
Coincidentally it is the Rudd and Gillard Government’s controversial relaxed laws related to foreign real estate ownership, that is driving demand for apartments, particularly near the Queen Victoria Market.
Mider owner and director Anton Wilson who is building three major apartment projects and a hotel next door to the proposed Ubertas tower, has limited overseas investment to just 25 per cent of units at his Infinity 8 project.
But he told Capital Gain, given demand, that around 75 per cent of apartments in the major project could have sold to international, mostly Asian-based investors.
He said prior to the relaxation of prohibitive ownership laws, overseas investors purchased about 30 per cent of new CBD apartment projects.
A spokeswoman for the Minister for Planning Justin Madden said a decision about the 350 William Street proposal has not yet been made.
The state government, like the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, has used the contentious Melbourne @ 5 Million planning strategy, which replaces the Melbourne 2030 strategy, to approve many high density apartment projects, it justifies will accommodate a booming population, and create jobs.
Last year, another ALP heavyweight, Federal Health minister Nicola Roxon employed Mr Mathieson as one of the government’s five men’s health ambassadors.