FAIRFIELD, Conn., April 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- HJ Sims (Sims), a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm founded in 1935, is pleased to announce the successful March financing, in the amount of $201,145,000, for Harbor's Edge River Tower Expansion. Fort Norfolk Retirement Community, Inc. (Harbor's Edge) was established in 2002 in cooperation with the City of Norfolk as part of a master development "Fort Norfolk Neighborhood." Sims has partnered with Harbor's Edge since the early 2000s, structuring, placing and/or underwriting the initial seed capital transaction, first phase of development financing, a refinancing in 2014 that contained predevelopment capital for the River Tower phase II construction and the development financing for the River Tower.
Harbor's Edge accepted 10% deposits for the River Tower starting October 2017 and achieved 70% in presales by September 2018. Sims concurrently ran a bank request for a proposals process for a portion of the costs while developing the terms and offering documents for the fixed rate bonds. The strong balance sheet and operational history of Harbor's Edge garnered a number of attractive proposals for bank financing that would be repaid first from initial entrance fee proceeds received from River Tower Residents. A challenge with the appraisal during the banks' due diligence phase required a portion of the initial entrance fee bonds to be offered on a convertible subordinate basis to fixed rate bondholders.
Sims coordinated with two commercial banks, including SunTrust Bank and TD Bank, to arrange a $100 million draw-down bank loan. SunTrust served as administrative agent and provided $65 million in financing to support the transaction. Sims exclusively underwrote $101,145,000 of fixed rate bonds, priced on March 21, 2019, achieving $500,000+ in savings on annual debt service from the feasibility study assumptions. The complex hybrid financing structure saved Harbor's Edge $20 million in net debt service and reduced projected maximum annual debt service by approximately $1.5 million. The bonds were distributed among a diverse pool of institutional and private client investors.
"When it was time to decide who would handle the financing of our $200 million expansion, it didn't take much thought. Sims has been our partner since 2003 and are like "family." In 2014, when we refinanced our outstanding debt, Sims secured $6.5 million in capital for pre-development cost. That, and the improved covenants they secured, put us in sound financial condition to move forward with the expansion. When we had a decision to make about whether we would do all bonds or a mix of bonds and bank financing, Sims' recommendation was not what would give them the most commission, but what was best financially for Harbor's Edge," said Cathy L'Heureux, Chief Financial Officer, Harbor's Edge.
ABOUT HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935 on Wall Street, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm with $2.2 billion of assets under management. HJ Sims is known as one of the country's oldest underwriters of tax-exempt and taxable bonds, having raised $25+ billion for projects throughout the US. The firm is headquartered in Fairfield, Connecticut, with nationwide investment banking, private client wealth management and trading locations. HJ Sims is not affiliated with Harbor's Edge, TD Bank or Sun Trust Bank. Visit www.hjsims.com/ourstory. Investments involve risk, including the possible fluctuation of principal. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Member FINRA, SIPC. Follow HJ Sims on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.