Former New York City Commercial Real Estate Financier Scoots Back to Tampa to Deliver $17.5mm of Capital for Build-for-Rent Community
Tampa, Fla., July 27, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- As he whisks between meetings in Downtown Tampa on his personal scooter, former New Yorker, Skylatus Property Capital founder and Real Estate Finance Guru, Randy Efron, cannot help but think about the immense amount of opportunity that exists by paring his NYC private equity and lending relationships and experience with Florida real estate developers and investors.
After recently raising $12mm of construction debt and $5.5mm of private equity capital for the ground-up construction of a 126-unit build-for-rent community near Tampa, Efron was asked, “Why Tampa for your business?” His response, “Until more people from gateway cities like New York and Los Angeles start thinking beyond South Florida, Tampa will continue to be undervalued and will have more runway for growth. Tampa is a phenomenal city, and its continued growth is inevitable.”
Efron, originally from New York and raised in New Jersey, is the son of a blue-collar working-class family. He lived in Tampa between 2000 and 2006 and then returned in 2018. He graduated from the University of South Florida (USF) with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and started his career with Deloitte in Tampa after obtaining his Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license.
Early in his career, when he was not crunching numbers at Deloitte, Efron was spending nearly every free minute that he had with a local Tampa real estate investor that took him under his wing. It was then that he realized that his passion was real estate. Soon thereafter, Efron left his accounting job and accepted a land acquisition and development position with Lennar Corporation, a Fortune 500 homebuilder (NYSE: LEN), that was buying tracts of land throughout Hillsborough and Pasco Counties near Tampa.
Having a knack for numbers and a desire to learn from the “big wigs” in real estate finance, Efron left Tampa in 2006 and moved to Manhattan. He ultimately landed a role at Trinity Hotel Investors LLC (Trinity), a real estate private equity investment firm that acquires hotels and resorts. While at Trinity, Efron acquired properties, asset managed over 5,000 hotel rooms in the US and Europe, completed over $100 million of renovation projects, and executed loan workouts during the Great Recession.
Between 2006 and 2018, Efron collectively worked on all sides of the “closing table” as a real estate private equity investor/owner, lender, and broker. During that time, Efron held positions with Trinity, Hudson Realty Capital (a private equity commercial real estate fund manager), Stan Johnson Company (a brokerage firm that specializes in net-lease properties), and Walker & Dunlop Commercial Property Funding LLC (a lending platform that was originally a joint venture between Walker & Dunlop (NYSE: WD) and a fund managed by an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group (NYSE: FIG)).
As a lender, Efron lent on all property types across the country and provided commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) loans, bridge loans, mezzanine loans, preferred equity, Fannie & Freddie loans, and HUD loans. While in New York, Efron also obtained a master’s degree from New York University (NYU) in Real Estate Finance and Investment.
In 2018, “in a New York minute”, Efron had an epiphany. Throughout his career, he had always worked with capital brokers. When he was buying properties, he would hire brokers to raise capital which made him the client. When he was a lender, brokers would bring him loan requests which made the brokers Efron’s clients. What Efron realized was that the vast majority of the brokers that he worked with were primarily salespeople that lacked first-hand private equity and lending experience. They had never attended investment or credit committee meetings and therefore, they did not necessarily know all the intricacies of how investors and lenders really think. Efron’s epiphany came as he thought, “since I know how equity investors and lenders think and since I have so many capital relationships from my time in NYC, the amount of value that I could add to clients’ transactions could far exceed that which a traditional capital broker could provide, especially in a smaller market outside of NYC. I will offer what other capital providers cannot and that will be my value-added proposition that differentiates me!”
Efron did his due diligence, quit his job, and relocated from Manhattan to Tampa to live in a city that was primed for his vision.
Today, Efron runs Tampa-based Skylatus Property Capital, a commercial real estate debt and equity brokerage firm that raises capital for multifamily properties, build-for-rent communities, hotels, vacation rentals, triple-net-lease properties, self-storage facilities and other types of commercial real estate such as office, retail, and industrial properties.
Efron’s differentiator is that he can do much more than just simply facilitate introductions to capital providers like traditional capital brokers do. Given his institutional private equity and lending background and his meticulous attention to detail from his accounting days, clients can trust Efron to function as their deal level CFO without incurring any overhead. Clients can leverage Efron more than a traditional capital broker which allows them to focus their time elsewhere while he closes their existing deals.