Triton Pacific opens New York office

The Los Angeles-based placement agent has hired Scott Arden, formerly of MVision, to head up the new office as the firm continues to build its business in and outside of real estate.

Triton Pacific Capital, a Los Angeles-based investment banking firm, has expanded its operations with the opening of a New York City office and has recruited Scott Arden, formerly a director at MVision Private Equity Advisers, to run its first new location since its launch in 1996.

“Our business is growing at such a pace that we thought we would make it more efficient to service our clients and open this office,” Robert Davis, Triton Pacific’s founder and chief executive officer, told PERE.  Prior to opening the new location, Davis had traveled extensively to New York because of the large number of institutional investors that are based in the city and in the larger metropolitan area. “I was basically the New York office,” he recalled. “I would catch a lot of red eyes to New York as we interacted with investors. Now, there’s someone on the ground who can do that.”

Arden joins Triton Pacific from MVision, where he was a director and one of three real estate-focused professionals at the firm, along with Mitchell Sikora and Carrie Coulson. Arden currently is the sole person in the new office, which opened yesterday, but the firm expects to add more staff to the location over time.

Additionally, Triton Pacific has hired Jaymie Gross as vice president to head up the firm’s client and project management activities. Also, Halinka Dunkerley, a vice president at the firm, will now be responsible for marketing client mandates to consultants and select institutional investors.

The firm’s growth is being driven by multiple factors. “The global financial crisis hit a number of private placement firms pretty hard,” Davis said. “Some of our competitors unfortunately had challenges, so that has provided us with a greater opportunity to expand.”

Davis also has seen a pickup in business as fund managers have experienced greater challenges in raising capital. “In the past, they could have looked to get capital from all of their existing investors, and that would be all they need,” he said. “In today's world, not all of those investors, even if they like the manager, are able to re-up, and even if they do re-up, they’re not necessarily able to re-up at the same amount they did in the past.”

Additionally, the firm, which historically has focused on real estate, has been building up its client book in the infrastructure and energy sectors. While real estate currently accounts for about 70 to 75 percent of Triton Pacfic’s business, Davis said the firm is on pace to become more evenly split between real estate, and infrastructure and energy, over time.

“We’re getting sought out by others that are not purely in real estate,” said Davis, whose real estate clients have included Los Angeles-based Paladin Realty Partners and New Jersey’s Hampshire Real Estate Companies. “Hard assets are something we understand well and can underwrite well. Energy and infrastructure fall into that category.”

Triton Pacific was founded by Davis in 1996 and has raised more than $25 billion of capital globally to date. Davis, formerly a vice president of real estate investment banking at Morgan Stanley, also co-founded a private equity investment firm, Triton Pacific Capital Partners, in 2002 and a real estate investment management company, Strategic Capital Partners, in 2004.