NEW YORK, Sept. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Centerbridge Capital Partners, L.P. and its related entities ("Centerbridge") announced the acquisition of the resort finance business of GMAC Commercial Finance LLC ("GMAC"), a subsidiary of Ally Financial Inc., primarily consisting of a $1.0 billion portfolio of loans related to timeshare resorts throughout North America. In connection with the acquisition, Centerbridge formed Lantern Asset Management, LLC ("Lantern"), a new asset management company that will manage the resort finance business. Lantern's senior management team is expected to include certain GMAC employees as well as William T. Phillips, formerly Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Marriott Vacation Club International.
Lance N. West, Centerbridge Senior Managing Director, said, "We believe this investment represents a compelling opportunity to back a strong and highly experienced management team to acquire and manage an attractive business, and potentially acquire other timeshare and related assets in the future. As many of the traditional lenders to the timeshare industry have exited the business, we believe that this affords certain unique investment opportunities in the industry. We look forward to a successful partnership with Lantern and to building long-term relationships with the leading operators in the timeshare industry."
Michael A. Carpenter, Ally Financial Inc. CEO, said, "This transaction is a continuation of our plan to reduce exposure related to non-strategic assets. We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Centerbridge and Lantern and believe the outcome is favorable for all parties."
The transaction closed on September 13, 2010. Centerbridge will hold the resort finance business in a newly created entity called Resort Finance America, LLC ("RFA"). Lantern and RFA are both wholly-owned subsidiaries of Resort Finance Holdings, LLC ("RFH"), a newly created holding company owned by Centerbridge and management.
Centerbridge and Lantern were advised by Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP (M&A counsel) and Holland & Knight LLP (regulatory and specialist counsel). Jefferies & Company, Inc. served as a financial advisor to Centerbridge and Lantern.
About Lantern Asset Management & Resort Finance America
Lantern is a new asset management company that will employ professionals with deep expertise in the timeshare and commercial real estate industries to manage the assets of RFA. RFA principally consists of a $1.0 billion portfolio of loans related to timeshare resorts throughout North America. Lantern and RFA are both wholly-owned subsidiaries of Resort Finance Holdings, a newly created holding company that is wholly-owned by Centerbridge and management.
Centerbridge Partners, with approximately $12 billion in capital under management, was established in 2005 and invests across multiple strategies, including private equity and credit investments. The firm is dedicated to partnering with world-class management teams to help companies achieve their operating and financial objectives. Centerbridge's limited partners include many of the world's most prominent financial institutions, university endowments, pension and sovereign wealth funds, and charitable trusts.
About Ally Financial
Ally Financial Inc. is one of the world's largest automotive financial services companies. The company offers a full suite of automotive financing products and services in key markets around the world. Ally's other business units include mortgage operations and commercial finance, and the company's subsidiary, Ally Bank, offers online retail banking products. With more than $176 billion in assets as of June 30, 2010, Ally operates as a bank holding company. For more information, visit the Ally media site at http://media.ally.com.
SOURCE Centerbridge Capital Partners, L.P.