B2R Finance, a provider of buy-to-rent mortgages for property investors, has named Katherine Briggs as the company’s new chief operating officer. B2R is a subsidiary of private equity firm Blackstone (BX).

Briggs joined the firm on Aug. 11 and has been tasked with helping B2R become a national leader in efficient financing options for the residential rental property investor, the company said.

“First and foremost, our focus is on our customers: small- and medium-sized investors in single-family rental housing,” said B2R Finance President John Beacham. “Katharine’s extensive experience in loan operations will help us quickly scale to meet the growing demand for our products and move us toward our long-term goal to create an efficient and dependable financing vehicle for a new set of investors.”

Briggs joins B2R from BlackRock Solutions, where she was managing director, overseeing the investment management company’s Charlotte office and its commercial real estate advisory group.

While at BlackRock, Briggs managed GSE multifamily loan underwriting and securitization, commercial mortgage-backed securities analysis, and large-scale valuation and risk assessment advisory projects for both domestic and international institutions.

Prior to joining BlackRock, Briggs also held leadership positions at Summit Properties Inc., where she was vice president of finance. Earlier in her career, she was an originator and underwriter at First Union Securities on CMBS, bridge, mezzanine and equity commercial real estate investments.

“B2R is creating a new field of investing – filling an unmet demand and providing a valuable service to a growing field of investors,” said Briggs. “This is a rare opportunity to work on an entrepreneurial endeavor and have the support of Blackstone, one of the world's leading investment and advisory firms.”

Former COO Jeff Tennyson will serve as an advisor to B2R through December 2014, the company said.

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