Benefit Street adds duo for originations, CLOs – exclusive

The New York-based firm has added personnel who previously worked with two of its top executives.

Benefit Street Partners has added two senior investment professionals, both veterans of Deutsche Bank, the former home of the two men Providence Equity Partners tapped to build up its credit arm, which would later become Benefit Street.

Larry Zimmerman and David Waill will join the firm as managing directors, with the former also serving as head of private debt originations and the latter as a portfolio manager for collateralised loan obligations, the firm said in a statement.

Most recently, Zimmerman was at Piper Jaffray, a firm he joined in 2009 to run its financial sponsor coverage business. In that role, he coordinated the firm’s investment banking activity with its private equity clients, the statement said. Before Piper Jaffray, Zimmerman spent 20 years at Deutsche Bank, where he worked with Waill.

Waill joins Benefit Street from the German bank, where he most recently served as the global head of loan portfolio markets in Deutsche Bank’s Leveraged Debt Capital Markets division. He also sat on the firm’s Leveraged and Structured Finance underwriting committee.

“Larry and David each bring nearly three decades of experience and have distinct expertise that we believe will enhance our team’s ability to capitalise on the opportunities in the global credit markets,” Benefit Street chief executive officer Tom Gahan said in the statement.

In 2008, Providence Equity tapped Gahan and Michael Paasche, who serves as senior managing director and head of Benefit Street’s illiquids group, to head up debt operations after Providence Equity had already raised $1.2 billion for a credit fund. Richard Byrne, Benefit Street’s president, is also a Deutsche Bank veteran.

The firm, which manages $20 billion, is currently in the market with its latest flagship fund, Benefit Street Partners Debt Fund IV, seeking $1.75 billion and Benefit Street Partners Special Situations Fund seeking $500 million.

In January, the funds held first closes on around $1 billion and $500 million, respectively, as Private Debt Investor exclusively reported at the time. The firm also recently landed a $450 million separately managed account with Texas County & District Retirement System.