NAMA pro joins Longbow

Graham Emmett, former head of lending and corporate finance at Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency, has become a partner at debt specialist, ICG-Longbow Real Estate Capital.

London-based ICG-Longbow Real Estate Capital, which last year raised £242 million (€276 million; $377 million) for a UK real estate debt fund, has hired a senior professional from Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency (NAMA).

Graham Emmett, former head of lending and corporate finance at NAMA, started at Longbow just days ago having left the Irish national organisation in January this year.

He has become a partner at Longbow, which has so far not issued a statement on the appointment.

Emmett is well-known in European property circles having not only joined NAMA in April 2010 in order to help oversee the financial and restructuring of €60 billion of loans under direct NAMA control, but also for having served as finance director at UK private equity real estate firm Delancey from 1999 to 2003. After leaving the London-based firm, he joined Goldman Sachs as head of its UK commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) team, as well as Goldman Sachs’ financing group and European special situations group (ESSG).

When he transferred to ESSG in 2004 he headed a new joint venture real estate mezzanine fund with Goldman Sachs’ Whitehall funds. He also worked on the 2004 take-private of UK property company, Canary Wharf Group, which at the time was the largest transaction in British real estate. With ESSG he also completed a €250 million whole loan to help Colony Capital buy four Aga Khan Starwood hotels and he underwrote a $1 billion of financing to help Tom Barrack’s company take over Raffles Hotel and Resorts Group.

Longbow, the company he has joined, closed its last fund, Longbow UK Real Estate Debt Investments II, in September 2011 when it also appointed ex-Aberdeen Asset Management managing director David Hunter as chairman.

The company was formed in 2006 by a group of UK real estate finance professionals.

It was 51 percent acquired in December 2010 by Intermediate Capital Group, the London-listed investment and asset management firm specialising in debt investments across other asset classes.