Cohen Financial to Become Part of the Pillar Financial Platform

NEW YORK, Nov. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Pillar Financial, an affiliate of Guggenheim Partners, announced today that it will acquire Cohen Financial in a transaction that is expected to close at the end of this year. Cohen Financial is a national commercial real estate capital services company and an originator of commercial real estate debt and equity transactions. Cohen is a highly rated primary and special loan servicer (S&P Above Average), and provides its clients with customized solutions in construction loan administration, asset management and capital advisory and valuation services. Cohen is headquartered in Chicago with regional offices in nine other U.S. cities.

Cohen Financial's servicing and brokerage units will retain the Cohen Financial name and continue to be run by existing management. After the closing of the transaction, Cohen Financial's owners, including Mariner Real Estate and Cohen senior management, will hold a significant ownership interest in the combined business. There is expected to be no impact on either Cohen Financial's or Pillar Financial's day-to-day operations or personnel.

The transaction will enable Pillar Financial, an originator of multifamily and commercial loan products, to expand its product offering, geographic footprint and borrower access. Additionally, Pillar will enhance its servicing and asset-management capabilities and continue to provide a high-quality experience to its borrower clients.

"We are excited about adding Cohen Financial to the Pillar Financial franchise because it quadruples our origination footprint and significantly increases our servicing portfolio, which, post closing, will exceed $20 billion of UPB," said Robert Brennan, Senior Managing Director of Guggenheim Commercial Real Estate Finance.

"The combination will diversify our sources of revenue and will increase production of Fannie Mae and FHA loans at Pillar," Anand Gajjar, Chief Executive Officer of Pillar Financial, added.

"Cohen Financial will retain the Cohen brand and the client-centric approach that we have had for 35 years and will enhance the client experience through a broader product offering," said Jack Cohen, who will be the CEO of the Cohen entity.

About Pillar Financial

Pillar Financial, founded in June 2010, is a leading provider of financing solutions for multifamily and healthcare properties. Pillar is a national Fannie Mae Delegated Underwriter and Servicing (DUS) lender, a MAP-approved Federal Housing Administration lender, and an approved Ginnie Mae Multifamily issuer specializing in construction and permanent multi-family and healthcare debt financings. Pillar provides a full array of financing solutions to owners of multifamily properties. Pillar's capabilities include financing solutions for market-rate and affordable-housing multifamily mortgages, student housing, senior housing, manufactured housing and credit facilities.

About Guggenheim Partners

Guggenheim Partners is a privately held global financial services firm with more than $190 billion in assets under management. The firm provides asset management, investment banking and capital markets services, insurance services, institutional finance and investment advisory solutions to institutions, governments and agencies, corporations, investment advisors, family offices and individuals. Guggenheim Partners is headquartered in New York and Chicago and serves clients around the world from more than 25 offices in eight countries. For more information about Guggenheim Partners, visit www.guggenheimpartners.com.

SOURCE Guggenheim Partners



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