Ex-Carlyle duo strike first deal

RedTree Capital, the firm led by Eric Sasson and Robert Hodges, has struck a deal in Paris and announces a tie-up with UK & European Investments.

RedTree Capital, the European firm set up by ex-Carlyle duo Eric Sasson and Robert Hodges in 2013, has set up a joint venture with UK & European Investments which has struck its first deal.

The first transaction for the new venture called RedTree Capital Capital Investments is a freehold office building, Le Bleriot, in Suresnes, near Paris at 1-3 Quai Dassault. It was built in 2005 and is fully let to Sub Sea 7, a subsea engineering company, until 31 December 2021. The seller is a fund advised by LaSalle Investment Management.

In a statement, RedTree Capital Investments said they hoped this would be just the first of more deals as the partners were planning to make further investments in the Paris market in the next 18 months.

Sasson, former head of Carlyle’s European real estate team and founding partner of RedTree Capital, said the long-term fundamental “value drivers” of Le Bleriot plus “attractive financing markets” made this “an ideal first investment in France”.

Hodges, who ran European asset management and UK real estate deals for Carlyle, added that the creation of RedTree Capital Investments came at an attractive time. “The current market conditions and economic situation are favorable to our ability to find attractive investments where we can add value,” he said.

London-based UK & European Investments has a record of backing start-up private equity real estate firms. Another example is Germany’s Albulus Advisors that it backed in June 2103 to invest up to €100 million in German nonperforming loans. Adam Golebiowski, acquisitions director, said in a statement: “RedTree Capital has a strong investment track record in Paris and a promising transaction pipeline. We continue to see long-term value in Paris and are planning to allocate further capital to the venture.”

Sasson and Hodges left The Carlyle Group in the summer of 2013 after 12 years with the firm. Sasson was responsible for establishing the European real estate platform for the Washington D.C. firm, and raised three funds and invested more than €4 billion of equity. He was formerly head of LaSalle Investment Management, Continental European operations. Hodges also joined in 2001 from LaSalle as one of Carlyle Europe’s founding partners and was responsible for real estate asset management across Europe and the acquisitions of real estate in the UK.

RedTree Capital is keeping its name and is still in the process of assembling further capital for the business. PERE reported in 2013 how it was aiming to raise €500 million for a pan-Europe fund.