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Pluto Finance to back resi schemes to the tune of £360m

Residential lender Pluto Finance has raised £94m of equity to lend to new projects as it gets set to lend £360m for schemes in London and the south of England.

The equity has been raised with the backing of funds managed by Blackstone, Clearbell Capital LLP and other institutional investors. The firm had already raised £100m of equity in May 2013.

Pluto Finance said it would be able to lend £360m to residential development schemes in London and the south of England over the next four years as capital is recycled once developments are completed.

Pluto Finance provides developers with “stretched senior” loans of up to 90 per cent of the cost of the development, with a minimum loan size of £10m.

Over the past 10 months, Pluto Finance has made stretched senior loans to fund schemes with a gross development value of £170m. Transactions included a loan of £24m for a scheme of 111 units in Surrey Quays in south east London and a loan of £12m for a scheme of 36 units in West Hampstead, north London.

Chris Philp, chief executive of Pluto Finance, said the firm was “filling the gap left by the large number of banks that have withdrawn from the residential property development finance market in the last five years”.

Chad Pike, senior managing director at Blackstone, said Pluto’s team had been backed as they had demonstrated their ability to complete transactions quickly and to “efficiently manage loan disbursements and construction oversight”.

In the last three years, Pluto Finance has also provided mezzanine loans to projects with a gross development value in excess of £290m. It provides mezzanine loans of between £1m and £5m and said they will continue to be available for projects in London and the south.

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