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ATLANTA-Locally based Gables Residential has received a $705-million mortgage loan from Milwaukee-based Northwestern Investment Management Co. to refinance interim loan received to take the company private in September 2005.

The loan was secured by a collateral pool of 31 apartment communities in Georgia, Florida, Texas, California and Washington, DC. The loan refinances loans used by New York City-based ING Clarion Partners and Lehman Brothers to take the company private. “Northwestern’s flexibility as a general account lender provided us the options that we need to implement our vision now and in the future,” says Gables Residential CFO Dawn Severt in a prepared statement. David Fitch is CEO of Gables Residential.

Northwestern Investment Management Co. vice president-real estate Dave Clark tells GlobeSt.com that because the company is a general account lender, it allowed flexibility with the loan. For example, under terms of the loan, Gables can sell off a property used as collateral for the loan and replace it with another property. “Because the loan comes from one pool of money, it makes it easier to do these types of things,” Clark says. “That’s attractive to borrowers.”

A private equity partnership sponsored by ING Clarion agreed to buy Gables Residential Trust for approximately $2.8 billion. The buyer, a US subsidiary of Amsterdam-based ING Groen NV, had a multifamily portfolio of approximately 10,000 apartment units. Under the agreement, ING Clarion acquired all of Gables’ common stock for $43.50 a share. ING made a $400-million equity investment and the balance came from equity capital arranged by Lehman Brothers Inc. and its affiliates, which acted as financial advisor to ING on the transaction, GlobeSt.com previously reported.

The $705 million was funded in three separate tranches maturing in five, seven and 10 years respectively. The loan was originated in Northwestern Mutual’s Atlanta office, but personnel in Dallas, Tampa, Newport Beach and Washington, DC assisted in the transaction.

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