Steinbridge Group, a New York-based private real estate firm, has brought on Tawan Davis as chief executive as the firm looks to institutionalize its business.
The position is a newly created role, as Steinbridge previously lacked an executive team structure, as it previously operated as a consortium of investors that primarily invested in real estate. The firm is now seeking to create a platform that can pursue high-quality real estate transactions with global institutional capital, according to a statement last week. In his new role, Davis plans to expand the executive team in the coming months, he told PERE.
“Unlike most companies, these folks have invested very discretely and are now trying to move that to a more solid, institutional business,” Davis said.
Steinbridge primarily targets core-plus and value-add office investments in gateway cities, with smaller transactions in multifamily and hotels. The firm has focused largely on New York City, Boston and Washington DC, particularly in growing submarkets within those cities, such as Long Island City in New York and Cambridge in Boston. The firm is targeting buildings for tenants in the technology, advertising, media and information industries, rather than banks and other companies that have traditionally anchored office buildings in these cities. Steinbridge does deals in the $120 million to $400 million range, which Davis says is an underserved market of “orphaned assets” that are too large for local players and too small for large private equity firms.
In the next six to 12 months, Davis said Steinbridge hopes to go under contract for deals in both Boston and Washington, and identify an investment in New York. In that same time frame, he also plans to increase the firm’s assets under management to between $500 million and $1 billion.
Steinbridge acts as both a real estate operator and an investor for deals with a number of partners, which Davis declined to identify. The firm has not yet launched a commingled fund, although Davis said Steinbridge may pursue one in the future.
Davis comes to the firm after two years as president and chief investment officer at the Peebles Corporation, a Miami-based developer. Earlier in his career, Davis was a real estate private equity investor and asset manager at Prudential Real Estate Investors for four years and worked for three years in investment banking at Goldman Sachs.
In March, Davis’ former employer, Peebles, filed a lawsuit against him in Miami, charging Davis on five counts, including the breach of his nondisclosure agreement and his fiduciary duty. Among other allegations, Peebles said Davis misused confidential information to secure a job with a competing company, ScanlanKemperBard. Davis told PERE he has not filed any counter-litigation.