London-based loan servicing firm Mount Street, which is led by Paul Lloyd and Ravi Joseph, is expanding into the US market with the creation of a subsidiary firm based in Atlanta.
Mount Street US will initially manage a “multi-billion dollar” portfolio of commercial real estate loans, the company said in an announcement.
“Expanding Mount Street to the US is not only part of our global corporate vision, but will also provide an enhanced, innovative approach to loan servicing and asset management for US-based institutional clients,” commented Lloyd, co-founder and global head of servicing and asset management at Mount Street.
The US arm of the firm will mirror its European operations by providing primary and special servicing, as well as asset management services across a broad range of asset classes, including real estate, project finance and securitised investments.
Toni Walker, formerly of CRE Consulting & Development Corporation and CW Financial Services, will lead the team in Atlanta as senior director and head of US servicing and asset management. Christie Calhoun will join Walker as senior director and head of asset management. Calhoun was most recently director of asset management at Situs.
“We believe this is the ideal time to develop a sophisticated platform with a highly-skilled team behind Mount Street US,” said Walker. “Our collaboration with institutional clients globally has driven this expansion and we are excited to open this office in response to demand from our clients.”
In addition to the new Atlanta office, Mount Street is also based in London, Frankfurt, Athens, Amsterdam and Dublin. The firm specialises in loan servicing, due diligence, underwriting and work-out of both performing and non-performing debt.
Mount Street has undergone significant expansion in recent months. In February, it was announced that Germany’s Aareal Bank had bought a 20 percent stake in the firm Mount Street in a bid to support its real estate syndication activities.
The acquisition of the stake came as Mount Street’s founding partners, Lloyd and Joseph, completed a management buy-out of the firm’s seed investor. Alongside Aareal’s investment, Lloyd and Joseph bought the equity stake of Greenfield Partners, a US private equity real estate firm which provided the principal seed capital for Mount Street at its launch in 2013.
The agreement with Aareal came soon after Mount Street won a €29 billion wind-down mandate through the acquisition of the portfolio manager of defunct German bank WestLB’s legacy loan-book. The firm bought the portfolio management subsidiary of Erste Abwicklungsanstalt (EAA), the ‘bad bank’ which was formed in 2009 to manage the assets of the former WestLB.
The portfolio transfer and management contract was the largest of its kind completed in Europe and brought the volume of debt which Mount Street manages to around €55 billion. The portfolio included NPLs, ABS notes, leveraged credit and asset and structured finance.