Beech Street Capital looks very different from most lending partners. Since its founding in late 2010, the Bethesda, MD-based firm has made its mark in the multifamily sector. With more than $4 billion in originations in just over two years, Beech Street is now the number-three Fannie Mae lender nationwide and is rapidly accelerating its Freddie Mac and FHA business.
Flanked by seasoned, well-capitalized investors and an entrepreneurial team, president and CEO Grace Huebscher has converted strong market fundamentals and historically low interest rates into record volume. But sustained economic volatility and uncertainty surrounding the agencies pose strategic questions for Huebscher and the firm’s chairman, banking veteran Alan Fishman.
How did it all begin? Beech Street got its start by obtaining a DUS license from Fannie Mae and, in late 2009, Huebscher, along with partners Fishman, Ralph Herzka and J. Jay Lobell, opened its doors. The firm received its Freddie Mac license the following spring, followed by FHA MAP and HUD LEAN in early 2011.
“We had a robust initial pipeline out of the gate, largely in the Northeast with our correspondent relationship with Meridian Capital Group. This enabled us to invest in high-quality staff, sound infrastructure and build our direct business nationwide,” says Huebscher, who had spent many years in senior positions with Fannie Mae prior to founding Beech Street.
In its first full year, Beech Street surpassed the billion-dollar mark, a record for an agency lender. “We doubled that performance in 2011 and in 2012, we are well on our way to continue this momentum,” says Huebscher…
…For the rest of the story, go to the September 2012 issue of Real Estate Forum online.