Listing who we see as Europe’s top lenders is no easy task, but it is a challenge Real Estate Capital has taken on each year since 2014; in the first year highlighting the most active 30 (subsequently 40) debt providers in the market.
We will be doing the same this October. In a market with an expanding cast of lenders, we believe it is a fascinating and thought-provoking exercise to identify those leading the pack each year. Given the interest the annual edition generates, it seems you, our readers, agree.
The reason compiling our Top 40 is such a challenge, is because it is almost impossible to compare lenders like-for-like. For instance, if a German bank, funded through the Pfandbrief market, lends billions of euros of senior debt during a given year, does that mean it had more of an impact than a private real estate debt fund lending institutional money in mezzanine deals with a total volume a fraction of that size? Each lender’s activities might have had a huge impact on their borrowers, but there is not one single metric by which we can measure all in the market.
Origination volumes are, of course, an indication of a lender’s performance, but this is not simply a numbers game and, as such, our Top 40 is not a ranking.
Rather, our aim is to highlight lenders we believe made the most significant impact on their parts of the market. That means considering a range of factors; which banks most demonstrably served the needs of borrowers? Which organisations entered new markets and sectors to provide liquidity where it was needed? Who won financing mandates for Europe’s stand-out property deals? Who closed the market’s most complex transactions? Who conducted the most successful fundraising?
We, as an editorial team, ask these questions. We speak to key industry contacts; we trawl the archive of the year’s coverage; and we debate between ourselves which organisations ought to be included and why.
For the first time, we are inviting you, our trusted readers, to put forward your case if you feel your organisation deserves to be in our list. Arguments in favour of other organisations are also welcome; we would like to hear borrower and advisor views as well. Making a submission will not guarantee inclusion in the list, but it will provide our editorial team with additional food for thought during the decision-making process.
We will accept submissions by email until midday, Friday 20 July. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org with TOP LENDERS in the subject line.
What we want to hear is:
• Lending volumes for H1 2018 (broken down by type of lending such as senior, mezzanine) as well as your 2017 total volume. To repeat, volumes are not everything, but they are important.
• Net return and average lending margin achieved across your H1 2018 lending.
• If relevant to your business, capital raised (third-party and segregated mandates specified) since October 2017.
• Highlights since we last published the list in October 2017. This could include specific deals of interest, expansion into new markets, new business lines, key appointments.
• A brief description of why your organisation ought to be considered for inclusion.
More organisations than ever before are active in Europe’s commercial real estate market. Savills, at its Financing Property event earlier this month, estimated 240 lenders are active in the UK market alone.
There will be strong opinions about which among them had the most impact in Europe since our last Top Lenders edition. We look forward to hearing these views.