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Ex Carlyle duo target €500m for debut fund

Eric Sasson and Robert Hodges, the former heads of European real estate at The Carlyle Group, have launched a fund at new firm RedTree Capital to invest in value-add and opportunistic deals in Western Europe.

RedTree Capital, the new firm established by former real estate heads of The Carlyle Group in Europe, has launched its maiden fund targeting around €500 million of capital commitments, PERE has learned.

Eric Sasson and Robert Hodges began presenting the firm to prospective investors a few weeks ago, and according to marketing material seen by PERE, it is targeting primarily the UK and France.

The firm declined to comment on fundraising activities, but in an interview with PERE in October, Sasson and Hodges explained a plan to build a core team of around 20 people. The UK and France will be covered directly by local teams while other European markets such as Germany, Italy and Spain will be covered by exclusive operating partners.

Investors have been told that RedTree is looking at mid-sized office, residential, student and youth accommodation, land assembly and zoning plus hotel investments. Marketing material says “dislocation in the Western European real estate markets provides an unparalleled investment opportunity.” It also describes how the debt-led crisis and forced sale opportunities are coming from public and corporate institutions, the end of “extend and pretend” period for banks has arrived, and that there is undersupply of various real estate assets in certain sectors.

Sasson and Hodges left The Carlyle Group this summer 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 the private equity firm’s founding partners and was responsible for real estate asset management across Europe and the acquisitions of real estate in the UK.

The third member of the team is Oussama Daher, who worked at Carlyle since 2001 and was also at LaSalle along with Sasson and Hodges in the 1990s. At Carlyle he was managing director and chief financial officer for European real estate investments and was based out of the company’s Luxembourg office.