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BALTIMORE-Multifamily housing lender MuniMae, more formally known as Municipal Mortgage & Equity, has entered into a $102 million cash agreement to acquire Lend Lease Real Estate Investments’ Boston-based equity financing division Housing and Community Investing. MuniMae has arranged for a $120 million acquisition facility with the assistance of RBC Capital Markets to facilitate the transaction. Company officials expect to seal the deal officially during the next quarter, after which the unified organization will carry the name of MMA Financial. The transaction will leave the newly formed MMA Financial in control over $7.4 billion in real estate investments.

“MMA Financial overnight becomes one of the nation’s largest and most influential players in the affordable-housing industry, bringing together two of the industry’s strongest and most experienced franchises, which combined can offer clients a unique range of products and enhanced quality of service,” says MuniMae board chairman and CEO Mark K. Joseph. “HCI perfectly reinforces our affordable housing debt financing business as well as complementing our existing tax credit syndication operation.”

As for personnel change, it is unclear how many of the 127 employees in HCI’s Boston office will make the transition to MMA Financial’s headquarters in Baltimore. However, both firms contend that upper management is expected to stay in place. HCI managing director Jenny Netzer will head up MMA Financial, which will be the result of the fusion between HCI and MuniMae Midland’s equity tax credit syndication subsidiary, as its executive vice president. Netzer says, “The integrated business will retain the best features of both operations, including access by investor clients to a broad range of well-structured and well-managed investments, and access by developer clients to a broad range of financing options.”

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