Reflecting the growth of online real estate crowdfunding, two former Colony Mortgage Capital employees have joined RealtyMogul.com.
Michael Sanchez and Charles Kim, formerly senior vice president and vice president at Colony, respectively, have joined the company’s Commercial Lending Division.
The hiring is meant to bolster the company’s commercial real estate debt platform on the heels of $250m in capital commitments raised from a group of institutional investors for bridge and senior lending.
Sanchez and Kim helped launch Colony Mortgage Capital — Colony Capital’s lending platform, focused on originating middle market loans secured by transitional assets — in 2013 and have originated and executed nearly $1bn of loans since its inception.
Sanchez, a 25-year industry veteran, spent four years on the acquisitions team at Colony, and previously was a founder and principal at CapitalStack and worked for Newport Venture Capital, Hanover Financial and GE Capital.
Sanchez called RealtyMogul.com a “rapidly emerging player in the world of real estate financing, while Kim, who has more than 15 years of experience in origination, underwriting and execution, cited the “continuing industry paradigm shift to online marketplaces” as a main reason for his decision to join the firm.
RealtyMogul.com and other platforms like it have raised both money and hope for the future viability of crowdfunding in commercial real estate as they begin to draw traditional lending professionals to online platforms; but some commercial real estate lenders question its long-term viability, calling the Internet-based approach impersonal and impractical, particularly in larger markets.
“Commercial real estate is a people business and it always will be,” one lender recently told REC.