(Bloomberg) — PacWest Bancorp has completed the first part of the sale of a $5.7 billion loan portfolio to real estate investment company Kennedy Wilson Holdings Inc. as the US regional bank takes steps to shore up liquidity.
The first tranche of loans acquired by Kennedy Wilson and its affiliate Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. totaled $3.25 billion in commitments and $1.8 billion in principal balances, Kennedy Wilson said in a statement Friday.
Cain International and Security Benefit Life Insurance Co. agreed to buy 10 of the loans, which are focused on rental apartments and student-housing developments in New York City and its suburbs, according to a separate statement.
PacWest is taking steps to bolster its finances after runs on deposits struck several regional lenders earlier this year, leading to the collapse of three California-based banks and one in New York. Its shares have slumped 60% this year amid the turmoil.
“This transaction will improve our liquidity and capital as we continue to implement our announced strategy to return our focus to relationship-based community banking,” Paul Taylor, chief executive officer of Beverly Hills-based PacWest, said in the statement.
The first tranche was acquired for $1.6 billion, with an additional 12 loans totaling $800 million in commitments expected to close on a rolling basis by the end of July, according to the statement. Kennedy Wilson said in May that it purchased a $2.6 billion portfolio of PacWest real estate construction loans for $2.4 billion.
The $5.7 billion total includes a $4.1 billion loan portfolio, $1.2 billion of loan commitments to be purchased by Cain and $400 million of loans subject to “further due diligence.”
“Even in times like today where the market is generally challenged and we have macro headwinds, there are still good assets and very good developments,” Matthew Rosenfeld, head of US debt at Cain, said in an interview. “We think, across the country, that there’ll be other opportunities where banks seek liquidity.”
Cain, led by Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Goldstein, has originated more than $7 billion in real estate debt, including a construction loan for the luxury hotel Aman New York and financing for a life-science campus in San Diego and a Chicago residential tower.
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