Daily News: July 31, 2012

Babson Capital Launches Middle-Market Lending Group

Babson Capital Management announced it has formed a new Chicago-based Middle-Market Lending Group to provide senior secured financing solutions to middle-market companies.

The addition of the group will enable Babson Capital to offer a full suite of middle-market financing products, complementing the capabilities of the firm’s Mezzanine & Private Equity Group, a provider of mezzanine debt and equity co-investments primarily for mergers and acquisitions and leveraged buyouts. The new team will focus on companies owned by private equity firms or outstanding management teams.

“Babson Capital has a long track record of building strong relationships with the middle-market private equity community, and we are pleased to address a real need in the market by adding senior secured financing to the growing list of services we are able to offer our partners,” said Michael P. Hermsen, managing director and head of Babson Capital’s Global Private Finance Group. “In addition, from an investor’s perspective, middle-market senior secured loans represent a stable asset class offering an attractive return while providing downside protection owing to their position in the capital structure.”

Joining Babson Capital as senior members of the Middle-Market Lending Group are Ian M. Fowler, Brian C. Baldwin, and Mark J. Flessner. Collectively the three managing directors bring deep experience in middle-market investing with more than 50 years of combined industry experience, most notably as principal investors for Freeport Financial and GE Capital’s Global Sponsor Finance Group.

“We are very excited to join the Babson Capital platform, which is well positioned to provide a stable source of capital in a relationship-oriented approach to the middle market,” said Ian M. Fowler, managing director and head of the Middle-Market Lending Group. “We are looking forward to building a direct origination franchise for a firm that has more than two decades of experience in the middle market.”