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NEW YORK CITY-RCG Longview’s Debt Fund IV LP has closed at $602.5 million in raised equity, the opportunity manager announced on Monday. It’s the fourth fund that RCG’s general partners have raised since 1999 to target high-yield debt opportunities secured by commercial real estate assets.

An RCG source tells GlobeSt.com that “it may be news that we’ve raised $602.5 million at a time when the market is in a bit of a vacuum. However, it’s important to stress that we have continued to be in this business for a long time.” The general partners have been large-scale owners and operators in their own right. “We continue to do the business we have done for some time, with modifications to expectations of yield and desire to make sure we‘re not over-investing.”

Those partners–Peter Cohen and Michael Boxer of Ramius LLC, Jeffrey Feil and Jay Anderson of the Feil Organization, Morton Olshan of Mall Properties and Jon Estreich of Estreich & Co.–have originated more than $2 billion in real estate mezzanine debt and other related instruments through RCG Longview fund vehicles. The vehicles have included bridge loans, mezzanine loans, bridge mortgages and preferred equity opportunities.

Over the course of nine years, the partners have made more than 450 investments backed by $15 billion in commercial real estate. A recent local example is the mezz lending RCG Longview provided in Hypo Real Estate Capital Corp.’s $130-million loan for a 17-story office and retail property at 681 Fifth Ave. last September.

In the course of RCG Longview’s history, the market conditions it operates in haven’t morphed all that much.”The biggest evolution has been the tightening of underwriting standards: a desire to provide a little less leverage and have a little better debt service coverage,” the source tells GlobeSt.com. Mezzanine loans, for example, could accompany anything up to 92% of capitalization earlier in the decade. Today, that threshold is typically 75% to 80%. However, “It’s still significantly less expensive than to bring in equity.”

And in terms of the types of real estate RCG Longview is targeting, “little has changed,” the source says. “We’re targeting the same major four food groups in commercial real estate and a little bit of hospitality, in the 50 states.”

Over the years, RCG Longview’s clients have run the gamut from mom and pop to major institutional investors. “The investors that survive in this type of market are going to be those that are well capitalized and have very strong operational expertise and know-how,” Anderson tells GlobeSt.com. “So by definition, there will be fewer mom-and-pop or very entrepreneurial operators, and more of those who have gravitated in recent years toward institutional equity models. Those operators will be looking more toward high net worth sources of equity. Their sources of equity capitalization, but the operators who have been successful probably won’t change.”

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