Thank you to our Sponsors, Preqin, Millennium Trust, ApexOne Investment Partners, EnTrust Global for helping us make this event possible. Without your support and guidance, we would not have been able to produce such a high quality and great event again. Thank you to all of our FLAIA Members and the FLAIA Board for their support during these challenging times. It is amazing how our community has come together to provide Leadership during great uncertainty. I am proud to be a part of this great group!
Real Estate, Direct Lending and Private Debt are 3 legs of the alternative investment industry and over the past 10 years each of these legs have grown to have a much more profound impact on Main Street. Perhaps these 3 legs have been the hardest hit part of the overall alternative investment industry. Because of the lack of real time liquidity and real time price discovery this Forum is the most important conversation for global investors to join. Most investors have exposure to real estate through equity / credit and amid a crisis, no one has all the answers today. We are determined to bring clarity, truth, facts and experience from the front line by the most talented investment managers.
The content that you helped to shape by answering the survey questions are being used to designed to help shape and generate answer to the questions that are causing lots of sleepless nights. Part II of the Real Estate, Direct Lending and Private Debt Forum will look at the short and long term impact of COVID-19. The coronavirus crisis has rapidly become a major part of Americans’ everyday lives and many of us are thinking about how the virus has and will continue to impact all sectors of the commercial real estate industry. Coronavirus is creating extreme uncertainty in the short-term with regards to cashflows. There will be a new normal defined by how people shop, work and play in the future. The question is, how will the new norm impact the commercial real estate sector?
In our last survey, you responded contrary to popular thought because most did not think it was appropriate to discuss investment opportunities right now in the middle of this crisis. Part I of the this conversation stayed away from investment opportunities as we collectively decided to focus more on the right here and right now. Due to overwhelming demand, the conversation will start to look at opportunities available today and in the medium term. We will include a look forward at conditions and opportunities in distressed investments and structuring issues involved in co-Investments vs. direct Investments.
Investment opportunities that help businesses that need working capital solutions to turn around the economy in time of Covid-19 will be featured in a panel session. The pandemic is a crisis like no other affecting two fronts: the medical and the economic. The importance to keep the economy running during the crisis is critical for those essential services, food distribution, delivery, and public utilities. Then will come the recovery. Liquidity is the key of to the game and where the alternative investment sector should focus on. The success of the pace of recovery will depend crucially on policies undertaken during the crisis. If policies ensure that workers do not lose their jobs, renters and homeowners are not evicted, companies avoid bankruptcy, and business and trade networks are preserved, the recovery will occur sooner and more smoothly. All working capital solutions that free liquidity into the market will be part of a quick recovery.
While the results from the survey produce sort of a photo finish, the winner of the most interest goes to Private Debt. The discussion will cover opportunities as our managers identify and discuss today’s pressure points in private debt and credit due to the Covid-19 pandemic that will lead to the opportunities of 2020 and beyond. Our expert panel will reflect on past crises and discuss how they are adjusting to today’s new realities and preparing for tomorrow’s opportunities. How are managers handling the increased uncertainty and risk? And where are the related opportunities?
Tonight I listened to Jaime Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan discuss how banks are the lenders of last resort and I could not help but think about how businesses are constantly looking for access to capital that traditional banks have not been able to provide since the Great Recession. I thought about the role that banks have been playing since the by lending to direct lenders rather than directly to businesses. This does not align with Jamie Dimon’s internal dialogue and I have witnessed the growth of many platforms as they have stepped in to fulfill the demand. One of the main reasons that businesses and real estate investors have chosen direct lenders over banks is their ability to respond quickly, underwrite deals and get loans funded.
We will learn more from market participants as they shed light on the current conditions!
FLAIA, Founder & Chairman