Phoenix hires former Avenue Capital manager

 Richard D’Addario joins Phoenix Star Capital as it plans its debut CLO.  

Phoenix Star Capital has hired Richard D’Addario as a portfolio manager, head of investor relations Russ Gerson told Private Debt Investor.

Phoenix Star Capital, which was launched by GSC founder Fred Eckert and Gerson earlier this year, also closed on $10 million in seed financing earlier this month, he said. The firm will target investments in distressed municipals, bankruptcies and distressed situations in Europe and the UK. The firm plans to launch its debut CLO in the early part of 2014.

D’Addario previously worked as a portfolio manager at Avenue Capital, where he managed $3 billion across six CLO businesses, according to his LinkedIn profile. He left the firm in 2009, an event that triggered a key man event on three CLO funds, according to a Pensions & Investments report.

Avenue Capital declined to comment. 

Eckert, who helped launch Goldman Sachs’ LBO Fund business in 1984, previously founded GSC Group, an asset management business that eventually ballooned to $28 billion in assets under management by 2007. The firm suffered following the collapse of global credit markets and eventually declared bankruptcy in 2010.

“A significant majority of GSC’s businesses were affected by the valuation and liquidity of high yield syndicated bank loans and bonds. As such, the credit market 'lock up' was putative to GSC as the deterioration in the credit standings of the companies that issued the debt held in our funds had substantial negative impact on the various ratio tests in our CLOs,” Eckert said in a letter made available to PDI.

“The result of these dramatic and unforeseeable credit problems was a substantial reduction in gross fee income to GSC.”