We recently engaged Sapphire to refinance a maturing CMBS loan on two of our retail centers in the Southeast. Despite the challenging economic environment and significant real-time deterioration in the capital markets, Walter and Andy were able to bring multiple lenders to the table for each property, and ultimately close on the refinance with a regional bank and a credit union, under terms that met my leverage and pricing objectives.
Compounding the challenges of refinancing our retail properties in the current environment were the issues of having to manage two closing processes with different lenders, while simultaneously defeasing the existing CMBS loan. This level of coordination required a level of attention and experience beyond typical closings – Walter and Andy delivered, without drama or fire drills.
This was my second capital assignment with Sapphire, and it won’t be my last!
We had the pleasure to work with Andy and Walter on the acquisition of a 216-unit student housing property with unique complexities due to the repositioning of the property to conventional multifamily, as well as to the abrupt rise in interest rates in Q2 2022. Sapphire accessed their deep capital relationships, making sure we had the best possible capital partners to execute our business plan. Andy and Walter were instrumental in coordinating all parties to execute a complicated transaction in a short timeframe. This marked the second transaction with the Sapphire team in 7 months, and we look forward to continuing to grow our relationship over many more deals in the coming years.
Andy, Walter, and Zach artfully navigated an incredibly complicated deal during an incredibly complicated time. Their unique structure enabled us to close on a deal when traditional financing was impossible to come by due to COVID-19. Sapphire struck a delicate balance between being assertive in pushing the deal along on our tight timeline, and being collaborative with the large number of stakeholders involved. I wholeheartedly recommend this creative, hardworking, and resourceful team.
I have worked with Andy and his team since 2016 on a few equity recapitalizations of our student housing deals in the southeast, a land acquisition with one of Andy’s family office investors and an Opportunity Zone investor who invested $25M in a multi family development deal in Jacksonville. Andy has always been responsive and has done whatever was needed to help us line up the capital needed to close in a timely manner. We have closed on several transactions with the same investor which is a statement of Andy’s integrity and professionalism.
Andy and his team at SCG were instrumental in arranging the debt and equity for one of our largest portfolio acquisitions last year in 2018. He and his team worked to understand our business plan and brought us the capital we needed to execute, including a co-GP equity partner that fit seamlessly with our operational and management strategy.
I have worked with Andy since I started investing in commercial real estate over 20 years ago. Last year Andy and the team at SCG executed on two large, complex assignments for UIP. The first project, a ground-up residential high-rise development, included EB-5 capital and an institutional fee investor. The second project, also large and complex, required the Team to perform within a very narrow window for closing. Andy and his Team raised both private and institutional equity, and brought in an institutional fee investor for the $100 MM acquisition in Washington D.C. In both cases Andy and the guys at SCG worked to understand our needs and critical deadlines, ultimately delivering the necessary capital for us to close.
I had the pleasure of working with Sapphire Capital Group (Andy, Walter and Zach) in closing a large financing on a trophy-grade mixed-use property. Andy and his team did an extremely diligent job of securing a financing package for their client during a very tough financing environment (COVID19) where the market for larger complex loans was very constrained. They, at all times during the process, provided their client with multiple creatively structured alternatives and sound advice always with their client’s interests in mind. In addition, Sapphire was intimately involved throughout the closing process and was on top of every aspect of the deal to ensure a smooth and successful execution. I would highly recommend Sapphire and look forward to working with them again on future transactions.