Australia’s former PM joins MaxCap

The commercial real estate specialist has more than A$2bn worth of deals in the pipeline over the next 12 months.

Australia’s former prime minister Paul Keating has taken a financial stake and board position at MaxCap, an Australian real estate debt fund manager.

Keating joined the firm late last year after providing strategic advice to it for over two years. The former PM’s government was behind the 1992 creation of Australia's compulsory employer contribution scheme that now looks after A$2 trillion ($1.5 trillion; €1.4 trillion) in superannuation retirement savings.

According to a spokesperson for Keating, the former PM was impressed with the firm's risk management and investment track record. He felt the time was right to invest into MaxCap's platform which aims to take advantage of the structural opportunity as the banks come under regulatory pressure due to Basel III and IV guidelines.

In December last year, MaxCap raised around A$50 million at the first close of MaxCap First Mortgage Fund, the firm’s debut commingled closed-ended vehicle. The fund has a term of four years and is targeting returns of around 10 percent. The A$50 million has already been deployed in deals in Sydney and Melbourne, according to a previous report by PDI’s sister publication PERE.

The firm is also understood to have over A$2 billion worth of deals in the pipeline over the next 12 months.

“It's a big shot in the arm to the sector. When you've got the big investors participating and you've got the former prime minister participating, you can see where it's moving to in the future,” said Wayne Lasky, the founding partner of MaxCap.

The A$1.4 billion firm has traditionally managed separate account mandates with Australia’s institutional investors including the recent partnership with the nation's biggest industry super fund, Australian Super, to offer large A$100 million-plus loans direct to developers.