H.I.G. Capital has recruited Evans Randall’s Simon Laker as principal and head of European asset management of H.I.G.’s €13bn real estate portfolio.
Laker will be based in the London office of H.I.G., with his appointment coming two months after the departure of Chris Zlatarev, who joined Ellis Short’s Kildare Partners.
The H.I.G. European real estate team, with more than €13bn of equity capital under management, is active across a wide spectrum of real estate asset classes and has completed 11 transactions across multiple jurisdictions in Europe in the last two years.
Two months ago, Bayside Capital, an affiliate of H.I.G. Capital, acquired six office buildings and one shopping centre, together over 52.000 sqm, from IVG Institutional Funds for approximately €70m.
In July, H.I.G. Capital was part of a consortium which acquired Volksbank’s first corporate real estate non-performing loan portfolio, with an unpaid balance of €495m, alongside Deutsche Bank, AnaCap Financial Partners and APS Holding.
In August 2013, H.I.G. Capital won the race to buy a 51% stake in a package of 939 homes known as Project Bull from SAREB, Spain’s bad bank, beating rival bids from Lone Star, Apollo Global Management, Colony Capital and a joint offer by Centerbridge Capital Partners and Cerberus Capital Management.
The NPL comprised of 3,566 loans and secured by a mix of primarily residential, commercial real estate and development land, was the first of its kind on the Romanian market.
H.I.G.’s real estate platform targets opportunistic real estate investments – with typical investment size ranges from €8m to €80m across all parts of the capital structure – focusing on adding value and improving performance to achieve risk-adjusted returns.
Ahmed Hamdani, Managing Director in H.I.G. Capital’s European team added: “The appointment of Simon reflects our commitment to a hands-on, value-added strategy, which has enabled the firm to achieve superior results on a consistent basis”.
Last week, H.I.G. Capital expanded its European real estate team in Italy with the recruitment of Deutsche Bank’s Gabriele Magotti as a director in the firm’s Milan office. At Deutsche Bank, Magotti transacted and managed real estate investments across several European jurisdictions as head of Southern Europe for the Alternative and Real Assets team.
HIG’s Capital is expected to begin raising $500m of equity for investment in European real estate next year.