EXCLUSIVE: Revetas eyes €500 million fund

The specialist central European distressed real estate investor, Revetas Capital, is back on the fundrasing trail targeting between €400 million and €500 million including coinvestment capital.

Revetas Capital, the specialist central European economies distressed real estate investor, is back on the fundrasing trail, PERE has learned.

The London-based firm is targeting between €400 million and €500 million including coinvestment capital for Revetas Fund II, with a first close slated in the first quarter of 2015.

The fund is a follow up to Revetas Capital Recovery Fund I that focussed on over-leveraged, distressed and under-performing property opportunities in central Europe. The core central European countries it is targeting are Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.

Revetas has not revealed the total equity raised for its maiden effort which closed earlier this year, but it held a first close in January 2014 on €100 million towards a €300 million target. Indeed, the first fund is now close to being fully committed for which Revetas has assembled €300 million of assets with 13 investments made. Sources said the firm was projecting IRRs of 25 percent from those.

Its first three investments involved two in Hungary comprising 12 shopping malls and one in Poland where it has bought a mixed-use office building in Krakow. The acquisitions involved a restructuring of existing debt held by four international banks active in the region.

A more recent example of a deal came in July this year when it purchased the City Center Sofia Shopping Mall that originally was bought by Heitman on behalf of Heitman European Property Partners III in 2008 for €101.5 million. The 473,000-square-foot City Center Sofia was added to the fund’s Park Centers retail platform, which built up a total of 14 retail assets across the region.

Revetas was established in 2009 by Eric Assimakopoulos and is backed by Jeremy Isaacs, who became Lehman Brothers' chief executive officer for Europe and the Middle East in 1999 and additionally was named chief executive of the Asia-Pacific region in 2000. He was credited with building up the investment bank’s international operations but left the bank days before it crashed, moving on to found JRJ Group as a private firm that focuses on making investments in financial services companies.

Assimakopoulos, a New Yorker, built the Gnome Group Inc in the US from a small design and build business into a data centre developer across the US and Europe during the mid-1990s. In 1999, he then partnered with Morgan Stanley Real Estate Funds to create Metronexus, a technology driven real estate fund where he was chairman and chief executive officer, with Assimakopoulos leading the acquisition and development of over €1.5 billion of real estate across the US and Europe. In 2002, he launched Bifrost Investment Group, the predecessor to Revetas Capital, into a leading CEE investment and asset manager. It has offices in London, Guernsey, Vienna, Bratislava, Bucharest and Krakow.