Qualitas seeks to float

Andrew Schwartz, backed by Trawalla Group, founded Qualitas in 2008.

Qualitas, founded in 2008 by Andrew Schwartz and owned in equal part with backer Trawalla Group, directed by Alan and Carol Schwartz, is seeking to float.

The non-bank lender will launch an initial public offering seeking to raise $335 million on a $2.50 per unit offer price.

The market capitalisation will be $735m, with the existing co-owners to hold the balance (54.4 per cent).

Qualitas manages five specialist commercial credit funds and eight real estate private equity trusts; all up controlling assets worth $4.2 billion factoring in other investor and non-fund mandates.

It employs 65 people from Melbourne and Sydney offices.

IPO proceeds will be used to fund co-investments to grow funds under management and to provide balance sheet capacity to underwrite, bridge and warehouse time-sensitive investment opportunities, a company statement said.

Start of our journey: Andrew Schwartz

If approved, Qualitas’ ASX moniker will be QAL.

“In many ways, we are still at the start of our journey and we are presenting this opportunity at a time of strong underlying momentum in our business across all our strategies,” Andrew Schwartz said of the proposed float (story continues below).

“Since its founding, the business has sought to leverage its strong local market knowledge, specialised management skillset, industry contacts and broader investment infrastructure spanning origination, execution and asset management to deliver on its investment strategies,” a company statement added.

“This investment approach has driven attractive, risk-adjusted returns for our fund investors and in turn, has enabled Qualitas to consistently grow its FUM and build strong, enduring relationships with domestic and international institutions”.

The IPO comes two weeks since the manager partnered with Gurner to acquire a central Parramatta site, with plans for a 61 storey apartment complex; this partnership is also co-invested in South Yarra’s Jam Factory.

Last month, Qualitas, with Greenpool, purchased the Gold Coast’s Runaway Bay shopping centre for $132m.

The Schwartz backed group has also recently partnered with Glenvill on a Bellfield residential project, and Pelligra Group to co-develop Ford’s ex-Campbellfield plant.

In October, we reported Qualitas and Trawalla, with Citta Property Group, sold the mixed-use Parliament Square (artist’s impression, top), under construction in Hobart, to Spirit Super.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.