PineBridge adds direct lending team

 The platform brings in first and second lien loans and unitranche to existing $28.5bn credit portfolio.

PineBridge Investments has brought onboard three managing directors to jumpstart its direct lending business, the asset manager said on Monday.

Jim Fisher, former president at BDCA, will now lead the strategy as head of PineBridge Private Credit, while Joe Taylor and Doug Lyons join as managing directors. The team is based in New York.

All three members of the new credit group most recently worked together at the Business Development Corporation of America, according to a statement.

Last November Benefit Street Partners acquired BDCA, a non-traded business development company that invested in senior and junior debt. BSP replaced BDCA’s previous external manager AR Capital in the deal.

The transaction also shook up leadership roles at the BDC and its board. BSP president Richard Byrne became BDCA’s chairman and chief executive officer. Peter Budko, BDCA’s former CEO, and Edward Weil Jr., who holds various board positions in other companies affiliated with AR Global, both stepped down from the board. Ronald Kramer, CEO of the Griffin Corporation, was added to the BDC’s board as an independent director.

PineBridge’s new private debt arm provides senior loans, including first and second lien, along with unitranche loans ranging from $20 million to $200 million on growth capital, acquisitions, leveraged buyouts and recapitalisations.

The strategy targets primarily US lower mid-market businesses with $7.5 million to $30 million of EBITDA across business and consumer services, food and beverage, healthcare, industrials, entertainment and information technology services sectors.

The firm declined to comment further.

PineBridge Private Credit adds to the firm’s existing $28.5 billion credit portfolio, which includes bank loans, collateralised loan obligations, high yield credit and junior capital structured credit, the statement showed. In March 2016, the firm held a final close for its PineBridge Structured Capital Partners Fund III at $600 million, surpassing the fund's $500 million target, Private Debt Investor data showed.

The firm manages $85.5 billion in assets on behalf of its global client base of institutions, insurance companies, and intermediaries as of 30 June. PineBridge was formed in March 2010 from the sale of American International Group's investment advisory and asset management business.