UK debt firm Longbow raises £242m, hires chairman

London-based Longbow Real Estate Capital has held a final closing on its Longbow UK Real Estate Debt Investments II fund and has also appointed ex-Aberdeen Asset Management managing director David Hunter as chairman.

London-based Longbow Real Estate Capital has raised £242 million (€276 million; $377 million) for a real estate debt fund with the aim of completing mezzanine and high yield senior debt investments in the UK.

According to an announcement by the firm, which was formed in 2006 by a group of experienced UK real estate finance professionals, the firm has now held the final closing for its Longbow UK Real Estate Debt Investments II fund after raising the capital from an investor pool it described as “blue chip institutional investors”.

Longbow said the firm had already completed a number of investments on behalf of the fund and had a “significant pipeline of further opportunities” from which to complete more deals.

The firm, which 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, said it had been advised by M3 Capital Partners on the fund.

The firm also announced it had appointed the former managing director of Aberdeen Asset Management’s property fund business, David Hunter as chairman. Hunter left Aberdeen in 2004 and is now a consultant with non-executive roles in the UK, Nordics, South Africa and India.

Martin Wheeler, Longbow’s joint managing partner, said: “We are very pleased that David has joined the team as his depth of experience and contacts in the property fund management world will be of great benefit to Longbow and its investors.”

“Following the successful close of Fund II, we are looking forward to assisting our borrowers in accessing the undoubted opportunities which exist in the UK property market.”

Hunter said: “The current market presents a perfect opportunity for successful debt investment, both for refinancing and for new acquisitions. Longbow has already proven itself as a leading player in the real estate sector, and I look forward to helping to deliver attractive returns for our investors and supporting the growth of the business.”

Longbow was originally formed in 2006 to manage third party capital investments in the real estate mezzanine and senior debt space in the UK. The firm deploys a “hold to maturity” strategy on the debt deals it partakes in and also co-invests in its funds.