Berkadia Appoints David Leopold as Head of Affordable Housing

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Berkadia, Berkshire Hathaway’s joint venture with Jefferies Financial Group, has appointed David Leopold as Senior Vice President and Head of Affordable Housing.

Leopold will lead Berkadia’s Affordable Housing team, a national platform that provides mortgage banking, investment sales and tax credit syndication services. He will report to Hilary Provinse, Executive Vice President and Head of Mortgage Banking.

“We are thrilled that David is joining Berkadia,” said Berkadia CEO Justin Wheeler. “He brings unparalleled experience in affordable housing and excitement and energy for the opportunities that lie ahead. Berkadia is committed to providing solutions to meet the critical need for affordable housing in communities across the country—something David has dedicated his career to. He is the perfect leader to spearhead our strategy to build the dominant presence in the affordable housing market, and we’re lucky to have him.”

At Freddie Mac, Leopold served as Vice President for Targeted Affordable Sales and Investments for the multifamily business. During his tenure, Leopold grew Freddie Mac’s annual affordable housing production from just over $2 billion in 2014 to about $9 billion, made up of new mortgage originations and structured finance. At the same time, he led the organization’s reentry into the tax credit equity market. He was also the primary contact with housing finance agencies, municipalities and community-based organizations for Freddie Mac Multifamily’s affordable housing and community development products and services.

“Berkadia has been making bold moves in the affordable housing space, adding talent and strategic capabilities to build a platform that is truly an industry leader,” said Leopold. “I’m excited to join this growing team and to bring my experience to bear to continue to fuel its exponential growth. There is a tremendous need for new and creative solutions to the complex challenges in the affordable housing landscape, and I’m excited to tackle those challenges at the helm of Berkadia’s talented Affordable Housing team.”

Prior to his tenure at Freddie Mac, Leopold led Tax Credit Equity Origination for Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where his team produced $1.2 billion in annual equity investments in low-income housing, historic and new markets tax credits. Prior to that, he managed Bank of America’s Community Development Lending platform, where he was responsible for $1.6 billion in annual loan originations and a portfolio of $4 billion in real estate secured assets.

Leopold has undergraduate and graduate degrees with honors from Fordham University and the University of Colorado, respectively.

About Berkadia

Founded in 2009 as a 50/50 joint venture between Berkshire Hathaway and Leucadia National Corporation (now known as Jefferies Financial Group), Berkadia is a third-party commercial mortgage servicer, as well as an approved lender for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and HUD/FHA.

The company is among the top Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae multifamily lenders.

Berkadia owes its origins to GMAC Commercial Mortgage Corporation, which was acquired in 2009 by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., Five Mile Capital Partners LLC, and Goldman Sachs Capital Partners. Christened Capmark Financial, the company had $10 billion of originations in 2008 and a servicing portfolio of more than $360 billion before running into bankruptcy in October 2009.

In a deal approved by the bankruptcy court, Capmark sold its mortgage loan and servicing to the newly formed Berkadia in a deal worth $515 million.

The deal brought Berkshire into the heart of the commercial loan serving business, and the company has one of the largest commercial real estate servicing portfolios.

© 2019 David Mazor

Disclosure: David Mazor is a freelance writer focusing on Berkshire Hathaway. The author is long in Berkshire Hathaway, and this article is not a recommendation on whether to buy or sell the stock. The information contained in this article should not be construed as personalized or individualized investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

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