The F&T History

Relocating from Taiwan to the United States in 1982, CEO and Chairman of F&T Group, Michael Lee wasted no time in launching his business. During his first years in the United States, Mr. Lee established “TAFA Development Corp,” named after his family’s shipping company in Taiwan. With his development company, Mr. Lee immersed himself in the field of real estate development by acquiring properties in the New York metropolitan area. Today, F&T Group has developed a rich portfolio of award-winning, large-scale residential and mixed-use projects, and is devoted to transforming Flushing as well as other neighborhoods of the City of New York through real estate development.

In 1996, after working together for 10 years, Sunny Chiu and Mr. Lee joined forces to form a partnership that balanced vision with pragmatism. The formation of this partnership gave way to the F&T Group.

Over the years, the company continued to acquire significant landholdings within the five boroughs of New York City and began to focus its acquisition and development strategy on downtown Flushing, Queens, where the company was, and continues to be, very active in local community affairs. In 2000, The F&T Group established an international real estate presence in China, and continued to flourish in both New York and in Asia, co operating with J.P. Morgan Asset Management in 2007 to fund and develop the World Trade Center in Nanjing, China. This $800 million development, designed by the local, Chinese government, totals 4.7 million sq.ft.

During its beginnings the F&T Group gained experience and momentum by focusing on small developments, constructing small residential buildings, day care centers and medical buildings in order to enrich growing communities. From these humble beginnings, the business continued to grow, and by the mid 1990s it undertook its first major project – Fulton Plaza, a 15-story building, which boasted a total of 80,000 square feet of retail space, offices, and a Boutique Hotel located on Fulton Street in lower Manhattan. Mr. Lee established “TAFA Development Corp,” named after his family’s shipping company in Taiwan.

Since then, F&T Group has developed many properties including, Flushing Mall, Sanford Tower, Prince Center, Queens Crossing, Park East Condominiums, 123 Third Avenue, 16 West 21st Street, and the World Trade Center Nanjing.

F&T Group also formed a joint venture with Shanghai Construction Corporation, one of the largest construction companies in the world and assembled significant landholdings for the large-scale, mixed-use developments – One Fulton Square and Two Fulton Square. F&T Group has also cooperated with the Rockefeller Group and AECOM in developing the largest project in downtown Flushing – Flushing Commons. Its most recent project, Tangram – also located in downtown Flushing – is a joint venture with Shanghai Construction Group (SCG) consisting of 1.2 million square feet of groundbreaking retail, office, residential and hotel space, slated to open in 2018-2019.


“Only when all contribute their firewood can they build up a strong fire”