67 WALL STREET, New York - April 9, 2013 - The Wall Street Transcript has just published its Investment Banks and Asset Management Report offering a timely review of the sector to serious investors and industry executives. This special feature contains expert industry commentary through in-depth interviews with public company CEOs, Equity Analysts and Money Managers. The full issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.
Topics covered: Consistent BDC Dividend Yield - Private Middle Market Funding - Decreased Bank Loan Competition
Companies include: Solar Capital (SLRC), Solar Senior Capital (SUNS)
In the following excerpt from the Investment Banks and Asset Management Report, the CEO of Solar Capital discusses the outlook for his companies for investors:
TWST: Can you begin with a brief overview of the histories of Solar Capital and Solar Senior Capital, including some information about your own professional backgrounds as well as how and when you founded the companies?
Mr. Gross: Bruce and I founded our investment advisor Solar Capital Partners in 2006. We structured and equipped it to operate as an investment management company for a business development company, or BDC. Today, Solar Capital Partners, together with our administrator, Solar Capital Management, is a 33-person team that manages two publicly traded BDCs, Solar Capital and Solar Senior Capital. That's exclusively what we do.
While Bruce Spohler and I have been partners since 2006, we've known each other, worked together and been friends since the late 1980s. We both graduated from the Kellogg School at Northwestern, and then we both worked at Drexel Burnham Lambert in New York's M&A department, and that's really where our background and our experience and understanding of credit came from.
Drexel definitely had a dominant market share in LBOs and high yield, which kept us busy. We worked exclusively on understanding and analyzing different companies' abilities to generate free cash flow and deleverage. When Drexel went bankrupt in 1990, Bruce cofounded a boutique firm called The Argosy Group to focus on financing and advising middle market companies. They were acquired by CIBC, and Bruce subsequently coran leveraged finance in the United States for CIBC.
I left Drexel and cofounded Apollo with Leon Black and three others in 1990. During my first 13 years there, I was a member of the private equity investment committee, which was the firm's exclusive focus at the time, and I've sat on some 25 different corporate boards. In 2003, we decided to diversify Apollo's business away from private equity. What we knew best was credit and investing in leveraged companies, so I created two new investment vehicles. One was a distressed debt fund, for which we raised $700 million-plus in 2003. Then as it relates to Solar Capital, I created Apollo Investment Corporation (AINV), a BDC, through a blind pool IPO in the spring of 2004 and raised just shy of $1 billion. I built the business to about $2.5 billion of investments over a two-and-a-half-year time period.
During that time, my entrepreneurial spirit remained strong, and for a number of reasons, I decided that I wanted to recreate a BDC on my own, away from Apollo...
For more of this interview and many others visit the Wall Street Transcript - a unique service for investors and industry researchers - providing fresh commentary and insight through verbatim interviews with CEOs, portfolio managers and research analysts. This special issue is available by calling (212) 952-7433 or via The Wall Street Transcript Online.