Dragonfly Property Finance has recruited Ludo Mackenzie as its new head of commercial property.
Mackenzie was most recently investment partner at Melford Capital Partners, where, in 2009, he helped raise £125m of equity for its Special Situations Fund.
Prior to that, he managed the Henderson UK Property Fund, a investment fund focusing on real estate throughout the UK.
He has joined Dragonfly to create a multi-fund platform for investment in real estate debt. Dragonfly says it will imminently launch a fund focused on short-term lending to commercial property.
The lender says its new fund will support bridging finance for commercial investments located in London and the South of England. It will lend exclusively to entrepreneurial property investors and developers with a proven track record. The fund’s specific focus will be the underlying asset, its vacant possession value and the asset management potential.
Dragonfly expects to hold a first close in the fourth quarter of this year with an initial £30m cornerstone investment. It is initially targeting FUM of £100m–£200m.
Mackenzie said: “We expect investors in the new fund to receive annualised returns on a par with a value-add, direct property fund, but with a superior income yield, greater downside protection and no leverage.”
Jonathan Samuels, CEO, Dragonfly Property Finance, added: “Ludo’s arrival has transformed our ability to take a view on more complex deals and complete them quickly.
“Property investors like dealing with a lending partner that can value the underlying asset, rather than simply seek a minimum level of interest cover, which effectively precludes those deals with short or no income streams.”