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MIAMI-Former Holliday Fenoglio Fowler senior managing director Robert Kaplan has formed Olympian Capital Group, a boutique real estate investment and merchant banking firm.

Kaplan, an eight-year veteran of HFF, is being joined at the new company by Mark Rutherford and Adam Lipkin. Kaplan worked with both men, who were senior analysts at HFF. “Our team was unique at HFF in that we focused almost exclusively on high-leveraged, structured financing for developments,” Kaplan tells GlobeSt.com. “We felt that there would be an enormous need in today’s market for a firm in Florida that specialized in these types of transactions.”

Moving forward, Kaplan expects to form strategic alliances between Olympian Capital Group and HFF in a number of areas. The new company expects to hire between five to 10 additional employees. “We left HFF on good terms,” Kaplan says. “We will continue to refer business to HFF in areas of their core competencies.”

The firm will serve as a source for the raising of capital for new real estate developments, as well as for existing residential, retail, office, industrial and hotel properties. The company will focus on arranging capital for the repositioning and creative reuse of existing properties, often through structured transactions. The firm, whose headquarters will be located at One Biscayne Tower Downtown, will operate in markets throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean.

Among transactions that Kaplan, Rutherford and Lipkin have completed in recent years include arranging the sale and securing financing for the 1.5-million-sf Centergate industrial project in Hialeah, arranging financing for the $144.6-million purchase of Aventine at Miramar and arranging $62 million of acquisition financing for Orlando’s 1,000-room Sheraton World Resort and Spa.

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