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Carey Olsen takes lead in landmark listing

Carey Olsen has just completed the UK’s first ever listing of a closed-ended real estate mezzanine finance fund on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) in a GBP50 million deal.

With instruction from Berwin Leighton Paisner with Oriel Securities as sponsor, Carey Olsen advised Duet Real Estate Finance on all Guernsey legal and regulatory aspects of the listing.

The unique fund has raised capital to invest in the European commercial real estate debt market and, upon listing, exceeded the minimum target with interest from a range of investors.

The Carey Olsen team was headed by Ben Morgan (pictured) and Geoff Ward-Marshall.

“Banks have been retreating from property lending, squeezed by Basel regulations and overexposure to the market,” says Morgan. “What Duet has done here is fill the void in this type of mezzanine financing for property and it has been exciting for Carey Olsen to be involved in such a pioneering fund launch.

Ward-Marshall believes it clearly demonstrates Guernsey’s expertise as a jurisdiction. “It is important to note that this is the first deal of its kind in the UK and Guernsey was chosen as the jurisdiction for the structuring of the listing which speaks volumes about the island’s regulatory framework and Carey Olsen’s expertise in providing advice on innovative structures,” he says.

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