Brookfield-backed BFIN taps Landmark exec for secondaries push

The firm, which rebranded to Sera Global last week, will expand its offerings including across secondaries and liquidity options for real estate.

Brookfield-backed global real assets investment advisory firm BFIN has hired an investment professional from Landmark Partners as part of its restructuring plans which launched last year.

The New York and London-headquartered firm rebranded as Sera Global, sister publication PERE reported last week. It is led by former global head of Brookfield’s private funds group Leo Van den Thillart and has added five managing partners among a dozen new hires since September.

London-based Kilian Toms joins as a partner from Landmark and will lead the firm’s secondary and liquidity solutions business for real estate in EMEA, according to a statement about the rebrand. Toms spent a combined eight years at Landmark where he was a vice-president responsible for originating, underwriting and executing real estate secondaries investments.

Sera’s liquidity solutions and recapitalisations offering, which sits within its private capital advisory business, advises managers who want to recapitalise their assets and portfolios, or create liquidity through a privately negotiated transaction, asset spin-out, tail-end fund restructuring or investment in secondary interests, according to its website.

Sera’s other managing partners include Van den Thillart, who has become the firm’s global head and managing partner after spending 11 years at Brookfield; Maggie Coleman, former head of international capital at JLL, who will lead the firm’s private capital advisory business for real estate; and Damien Smith, former head of real estate for UBS Global Wealth Management and former head of Europe for The Townsend Group, who will oversee the firm’s product development business.

Irene Mavroyannis, former managing director at Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets, has become the firm’s managing partner to lead its private capital advisory business for infrastructure, while Martha Tredgett has joined from alternative investment solutions firm LGT Capital Partners to become Sera Global’s managing partner for private capital advisory in Canada.

With the new hires, the firm looks to expand the service offerings from its three business lines of investment banking; private capital advisory serving owners, operators, GPs, sponsors, asset managers and private wealth intermediaries; and strategic advisory. Prior to the rebrand, Sera had completed more than $100 billion in transactions.

“Sera means to come into being, which we believe reflects the global evolution and expansion of the business,” a company spokeswoman told PERE.

“The rebranding is an expression of the new services and businesses that we are looking to build. As we keep evolving, we want a name that describes who we are and Sera really reflects the growth of our firm,” added Van den Thillart. “We are reimagining what it means to be a leading advisory firm by integrating additional strategic services for our clients, with a focus on real assets.”

PERE has reported that Brookfield Business Partners remains a majority shareholder in the business while the management team also holds equity in the firm. “Brookfield will help us with strategic growth of the business. The plan is for managing partners and partners at Sera to have equity in the business to ensure alignment and to drive excitement,” Van den Thillart explained.

Co-headquartered in New York and London, Sera Global has offices in Toronto, Munich and Seoul after closing four of its five offices in Asia-Pacific last year amid the restructuring. Van den Thillart told PERE that the firm will continue to expand the team with a plan to hire up to a dozen people in 2021 and up to 40 new hires in the next 12 to 36 months across North America, EMEA and Asia.

– A version of this article first appeared in sister publication PERE.

– Adam Le contributed to this report.