Dragonfly to launch bridging finance fund



Mackenzie to launch new property fund providing bridging finance for commercial property investments

Dragonfly FinanceLondon-based short and medium-term lender, Dragonfly Property Finance, today announced it has hired Ludo Mackenzie as its new Head of Commercial Property.

Ludo was most recently Investment Partner at Melford Capital Partners, where, in 2009, he was instrumental in raising £125m of equity for its Special Situations Fund.

Prior to that, he managed the Henderson UK Property Fund, a top quartile investment fund focusing on real estate throughout the UK.

Ludo has joined Dragonfly to create a multi-fund platform for investment in real estate debt — and to this end Dragonfly will imminently launch a fund focused on short-term lending to commercial property.

The 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.

The new fund will be seeded with a number of recently completed deals, which will not only give prospective investors more clarity on the types of deals being undertaken, but will substantially mitigate the initial impact of establishment costs.

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.

Ludo Mackenzie, Head of Commercial Property, Dragonfly Property Finance, commented:

“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.”