New lender taps Park Hill for fundraising

Frank McCourt-backed MGG Investment Group has enlisted the help of a placement agent to raise its first fund and has added a number of senior staff.

MGG Investment Group, the New York-based lending firm launched in the beginning of the year, is planning to begin fundraising for its first fund soon and has tapped Park Hill Group to help raise money. The firm was initially launched in January with $200 million in seed capital from Frank McCourt, a real estate developer and former owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team.

The firm has now drawn most of the seed capital and is starting to work with Park Hill on raising third-party money, according to MGG’s monthly investor update, a copy of which was obtained by PDI. The firm plans to raise a private equity-style fund as well as an evergreen vehicle and clients will be able to choose between levered and unlevered share classes, the memo said. A fund target couldn’t be learned by press time.

The firm also highlighted two new hires. Mustafa Tayeb joined this month as chief financial officer and Mier Wang started in August as a senior analyst. Tayeb was previously a principal and controller at Apollo’s BDC, for almost two years. Before that, he spent four years as a director of accounting at Avenue Capital Group, according to his LinkedIn profile. Wang has held a variety of analyst roles at the major investment banks, including JPMorgan, Barclays and Credit Suisse since 2011.

MGG now has eight people on staff and expects to announce another senior hire, to be based on the West Coast, soon.

Park Hill Group is the New York-headquartered placement agent that is about to spin off from Blackstone. The firm will combine with PJT Capital, an independent financial advisory firm founded by Paul Taubman, on 1 October to form an independent publicly-traded firm called PJT Partners, Blackstone announced earlier this month.

Kevin Griffin leads MGG as chief executive and chief investment officer. He was previously a managing director and credit committee member at Highbridge Principal Strategies. Before Highbridge, he was the head of private investing at Octavian Advisors and held senior roles at Fortress Investment Group. While at Fortress, he was responsible for originating and underwriting investment opportunities for the Drawbridge Special Opportunities Fund, the firm’s flagship credit fund.   

Gregory Racz serves as MGG’s president, chief operating officer and chief legal officer. He was previously president, principal and chief legal officer at hedge fund Hutchin Hill Capital. Before that he held similar positions at Octavian Advisors, where he worked with Griffin.