Aries Capital and Conlon & Co. Form Conlon Capital

January 9, 2017


Sean J. Conlon, chairman of Conlon & Co. and co-host of CNBC’s “The Deed,” and Neil D. Freeman, chairman of Aries Capital, LLC are pleased to announce that they are merging Conlon & Co.’s Capital Markets Group and Aries Capital’s Mortgage Banking Group to form Conlon Capital. The new full-service mortgage banking firm will leverage Aries’ and Conlon’s long-time client and capital source relationships to provide best-in-class debt placement, equity arrangement and advisory solutions for hotel, multifamily and commercial real estate owners and developers nationwide.

Mr. Conlon, Mr. Freeman and Conlon & Co.’s CEO Benjamin Burford are partnering with Northern Trust alums Rushi Shah and Tom Reckley who will lead the new company as chief executive officer and chief operating officer, respectively.

“This is a natural partnership for our companies and clients, and a clear case where one plus one equals much more than two,” said Mr. Conlon. “Both Aries Capital and Conlon & Co. are successful boutique firms known for our high-touch customized service and creativity. Aries Capital built its stellar reputation in capital markets for the past 26 years, and Conlon & Co. is a leader in brokerage and merchant banking services. Together Aries and our Capital Markets Group will multiply capital options for our clients, casting a wider net and covering more markets and asset classes. It’s a perfect match.”

“Aligning our financing services and resources puts us on a trajectory for tremendous growth and enables a strategic succession to the next generation of leadership,” said Mr. Freeman. “The synergies in our company cultures were also integral to our decision. We are all personally vested with every client and do what it takes to ensure deals make it to the closing table.”

Headquartered at 401 W. Ontario in Chicago, Conlon Capital will retain its existing satellite branches located in Los Angeles, Miami and Houston. CEO Rushi Shah expects the company to grow quickly over the next few years, and plans to hire additional originators and open new offices in Dallas and other key markets.

“Tom and I look forward to taking this new venture forward. We will continue to innovate for our customers through new products, technology and specialized expertise across all property types,” said Mr. Shah.

“Our current and past clients can expect only positive things from the merger,” said Mr. Reckley. “Like its predecessors, Conlon Capital will continue to protect our clients’ interests from start to successful closing.  Now, however, we will be able to offer customers more options and the advantage of the broader knowledge and experience of our combined teams.”

Since its founding in 1991, Aries Capital has arranged and/or directly funded over $5.5 billion in debt and equity across all property types in the United States and Caribbean. Through its affiliates, Aries has funded over $700 million in tax credit and mezzanine financing. While Aries Capital’s mortgage business will become part of Conlon Capital, it will maintain its interests in Urban Development Fund and other real estate ownership businesses.

During its 17-year tenure, Conlon & Co. has produced over $1 billion in financing, equity placement, development, portfolio management as well as commercial and residential brokerage. The firm owns and operates more than $100 million in assets nationwide and has provided more than $1.2 billion in mezzanine financing for new construction and conversion properties. Conlon & Co.’s businesses include Conlon/Christie’s International Real Estate, Conlon Commercial, and now Conlon Capital.

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About Conlon Capital

Chicago-based Conlon Capital, an international full-service commercial mortgage and real estate investment banking firm, is a division of Conlon & Co. and the result of a merger between Conlon & Co.’s Capital Markets Group and Aries Capital, LLC. The boutique firm offers best-in-class debt placement, equity arrangement, tax credit syndication, real estate brokerage and advisory through a high-touch, disciplined approach that leverages its extensive lending relationships and deep-rooted client and equity sponsors. Collectively the firm has funded more than $8 billion in debt, equity, tax credit and mezzanine financing for hotel, multifamily, office, retail, industrial, healthcare, self-storage and special purpose properties throughout the United States, Caribbean and Europe.

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