Ranieri and Ross to purchase Deutsche Bank Berkshire Mortgage
Real estate financial services firm Ranieri Real Estate Partners and equity funds tied to WL Ross & Co. signed an agreement to purchase Deutsche Bank subsidiary, Deutsche Bank Berkshire Mortgage, this week. Deutsche Bank Berkshire Mortgage originates multifamily mortgages for the government-sponsored enterprises and the Federal Housing Administration. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The private equity fund involved in the deal is run by investor Wilbur Ross. Ross' fund has already shown interest in growing its mortgage origination platform, with the firm investing $100 million in mortgage originator Capital Market Cooperative earlier this year. WL Ross & Co. is already the majority owner of American Home Mortgage Servicing. With $28 billion in its multi-family loan portfolio, Deutsche Bank Berkshire Mortgage (DBBM) is one of the largest originators of Fannie Mae-backed mortgages, according to a release on the acquisition. Founded more than 20 years ago, DBBM became a unit of Deutsche Bank in 2004. The mortgage originator has 160 employees and seven offices across the country. Its current CEO Jeff Day will retain his position along with DBBM's current management team. James Lockhart III, vice chairman of WL Ross, said, "We believe that multi-family is a fundamentally important and growing sector of the housing market. We have long been interested in this sector, and we are confident that we have identified the right vehicle and point in the real estate cycle to pursue an investment. We look forward to working with Ranieri Real Estate Partners to build on DBBM's strong performance." The deal is expected to be finalized by year end as long as the GSEs and FHA approve of the transaction. Write to Kerri Panchuk.