New manager Sycamore re-unites Highland trio

Mark Okada, Jack Yang and Trey Parker – who were all once Highland Capital executives – have got together to launch a Dallas-based credit firm.

Sycamore Tree Capital Partners, a Dallas-headquartered asset manager specialising in private and alternative credit, has been launched.

Mark Okada is chief executive officer of the firm, Jack Yang is president and head of business development, while Trey Parker is chief investment officer.

With 35 years of experience, Okada has become known as a commentator on fixed income, credit and the markets in general on television such as Bloomberg and CNBC. He was previously co-founder and chief executive of Highland Capital Management, a multi-billion dollar credit investment firm.

Yang, who also has 35 years of credit experience, was most recently head of the Americas and global head of business development at Alcentra, the London-headquartered manager. He was previously a managing partner at Highland Capital Management as well as having spells at Chemical Bank, Merrill Lynch and Onex Credit Partners.

Parker, with 20 years of experience in leveraged finance and private equity, was most recently a partner at Highland Capital Management. Over 13 years there, he was co-chief investment officer, head of private equity, head of credit and a portfolio manager. Parker also spent time at First Union, Morgan Stanley, BMO Merchant Banking and Hunt Special Situations Group.

Sycamore also announced that John Muse and Ken Hersh will be strategic investors when the firm launches its first funds, and will also sit on its management company advisory board and help shape long-term strategy.

Muse is a veteran of the private equity industry, having co-founded HM Capital in 1989. He currently oversees his family office, Muse Family Enterprises. Hersh was a co-founder and chief executive officer of NGP Energy Capital Management, a private equity firm, and is currently chairman of his family office, Hersh Family Investments, as well as a senior adviser to The Carlyle Group.

Based in Dallas but with an additional office in New York, Sycamore will focus on multi-strategy credit spanning areas such as traded credit, structured products and special situations.