Bandolik Returns to Deloitte, Joining Growing Distressed Debt and Asset Practice

Hired as a director with Deloitte Financial Advisory Services L.L.P., Bandolik contributes a background in real estate investment, accounting, investment banking, capital fundraising and debt placement, a combination of skills he views as ideal for advising investors, borrowers and lenders in today's difficult economy.

October 5, 2010
By Suzann D. Silverman, Editor-in-Chief

Deloitte has increased the ranks of its distressed debt and asset practice with the addition of real estate investment veteran Steven Bandolik. Hired as a director with Deloitte Financial Advisory Services L.L.P., Bandolik contributes a background in real estate investment, accounting, investment banking, capital fundraising and debt placement, a combination of skills he views as ideal for advising investors, borrowers and lenders in today’s difficult economy.

“I don’t believe the economy has bounced back the way people think,” he said, warning that there will be a continued need for restructuring both financing and partnerships, caused by decreased property valuations but also by such factors as a continuation of retailer problems into the holiday season, capital calls and an increased desire by previously passive investors to seek greater control of holdings. “There will be a lot of renegotiation going on—not just restructuring,” he said.

To address those increasing needs, Deloitte has been increasing its distressed debt and asset practice during the past 18 months. The practice, led by Guy Langford, currently includes 60 partners, principals and directors across a variety of disciplines, with plans to hire more. Bandolik, who started his career at Deloitte and will be based in Chicago and New York City, said he returned because of that multi-disciplinary approach, which provides the intellectual capital people seek in a one-stop shop.

Bandolik’s own background offers clients a well-rounded experience, including both his original accounting experience and his 30 years in the real estate sector. A one-time senior advisor to the Resolution Trust Corp., he has been involved in both operations and private equity fund raising, with stints as COO & managing director of Transwestern Investment Co. and president & CEO of Transwestern Commercial Services, a managing director with Nomura Securities International Inc. focusing on CMBS and most recently head of his own national real estate advisory firm, Real Asset Recovery Group. “The nice thing for me is that during my career I have been involved in all facets of real estate, with very few areas where I haven’t participated,” said Bandolik (who is also a member of CPE‘s editorial advisory board). “And I personally have had to write checks to lenders and make capital calls as an investor. I understand what they go through.”

Recalling the RTC days, he finds today’s capital markets-induced recession both similar to and different from that real estate-generated downturn. Special servicers’ focus today, he said, is on maximizing the value of the asset, whereas the RTC felt more of a sense of urgency to move the process along. Complicating workout processes today is the fact that relationships became less important in recent years, he added. Traditionally in real estate, investors and even their lenders would participate on multiple deals and felt a connection. “You knew they would be there. We’ve completely gotten away from that. Part of what’s occurred here is that you don’t have the relationships.” In the case of many CMBS-financed transactions, the investor doesn’t know who to call with problems.

“I believe strongly that real estate needs to go back to people and not just numbers and dollars. It’s important that we work together to come to a mutually beneficial solution.”