Comstock Homebuilding Companies, Inc. (NASDAQ: CHCI) said Wednesday it has formed a "strategic alliance" with SunBridge Capital Management, LLC, a private investment management firm supported by the Bainum family of Washington, DC with interests including Choice Hotels International (NYSE: CHH).
Comstock said the alliance was formed "to facilitate ... ongoing pursuit of certain homebuilding and multi-family rental projects in the Washington, DC market." The deal, however, includes up to $20 million of senior secured financing from SunBridge and grants the investment firm a warrant to purchase up to a million shares of Comstock. SunBridge funded a senior secured loan for approximately $13.7 million that closed on July 13, 2011 and has agreed to a commitment to provide an additional secured loan to refinance Comstock's Penderbrook project. The proceeds of the loan were used to refinance existing indebtedness on Comstock's Eclipse project and for general corporate purposes.
"This new relationship provides additional capital and allows us to pursue our strategic objective of disciplined growth supported by a conservative capital structure as we focus on enhancing shareholder value," said Christopher Clemente, Comstock chairman and CEO.
"We have been impressed with Comstock's extensive local knowledge and expertise in the Washington, DC market," said Chuck Ledsinger, Chairman and Managing Director of SunBridge. "This alliance is consistent with our strategy of investing in industries and organizations with demonstrated leadership and experience where our skill sets are complementary."
Zelman Partners LLC and Focus Capital Group, Inc. served as joint-lead placement agents on the senior secured financing and as financial advisors for the strategic agreement.