Walker & Dunlop to Launch CMBS and High-Yield Lending Platform in JV With Fortress Investment Group

Willy Walker.
Willy Walker.

Walker & Dunlop and an affiliate of a fund managed by Fortress Investment Group are launching a new CMBS lending platform to provide financing for multifamily and commercial real estate properties around the country.

The Bethesda-based mortgage company announced the news of the joint venture, to be named Walker & Dunlop Commercial Property Funding, LLC, Wednesday morning. In an October interview with Mortgage Observer, Willy Walker, the company’s chairman and CEO, said Walker & Dunlop was in talks centered on launching a conduit as a hedge against agency origination reductions and a means of lending more aggressively on other commercial property types.

The new CMBS lending platform will provide first mortgage loans on all commercial real estate asset classes and originate high-yield whole loans, mezzanine debt and preferred equity. 

The joint venture will be based in New York City and overseen by Tim Koltermann, senior vice president and group head of CRE originations and operations at Walker & Dunlop. Mr. Koltermann has 25 years experience in commercial loan originations, CMBS trading, loan pricing and structuring, as well as CMBS securitization. 

“Walker & Dunlop finished 2012 as the 10th largest commercial real estate lender in the United States and third largest multifamily lender as a major partner to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and HUD,” Mr. Walker said Wednesday morning. “This new initiative with Fortress Investment Group allows us to leverage our scaled origination, underwriting, servicing and asset management infrastructure to offer an alternative capital source for all commercial real estate asset classes.

“Over the past year, Walker & Dunlop has expanded to 20 offices across the country, and this new venture will provide our clients with a significantly diversified proprietary lending platform to meet their financing objectives.”

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