Shiboleth LLP Advises Gaia Real Estate in Acquisition of 9,500 Unit Multifamily Portfolio via Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Auction

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Shiboleth LLP successfully represented its client Gaia Real Estate in connection with a $22.5 million investment of new equity to acquire and recapitalize PJ Finance Company, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

We are delighted to have been able to help Gaia Real Estate execute an important strategic acquisition. We have recently expanded our corporate practice through our recruitment of top professionals, who served an instrumental role in this transaction.

Shiboleth LLP, a boutique international law firm with top-ranked transactional and litigation practices, today announced that it successfully represented its client Gaia Real Estate in connection with a $22.5 million investment of new equity to acquire and recapitalize PJ Finance Company, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in March 2011 and reemerged as a going concern on May 11, 2012. Gaia Real Estate partnered with Starwood Capital, a leading global private investment firm, to complete the acquisition.

PJ Finance Company’s assets include a multifamily portfolio consisting of over 9,500 multifamily units located in major metropolitan areas throughout the high-growth Sunbelt region. The portfolio was originally acquired in 2001 and recapitalized with more than $540 million of securitized debt financing in 2006, at a valuation of $580 million. In March 2011, PJ Finance Company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. As part of the recapitalization agreement, the debt has been restructured and the loan matures in 2020. While in Chapter 11, $14 million was re-invested into the portfolio, and current occupancy has dramatically improved to more than 90% as nearly 1,000 units were brought back online.

Amnon Shiboleth, Senior Partner of Shiboleth commented “We are delighted to have been able to help Gaia Real Estate execute an important strategic acquisition. We have recently expanded our corporate practice through our recruitment of top professionals, who served an instrumental role in this transaction. Our key role in this transaction is another example of our corporate and real estate groups’ capabilities and our value proposition to our clients.”

Danny Fishman and Amir Yerushalmi, Managing Partners at Gaia Real Estate, added "We want to thank Shibboleth for the work they have done while representing Gaia Real Estate in this deal and especially to Moty Ben Yona, who did an excellent job, was highly responsive and added significant value to the deal.”

About Shiboleth LLP

Shiboleth LLP is a boutique international law firm, established in 1976 and centered in Manhattan with affiliated firms in Tel Aviv, Israel and Shanghai, China. The firm's broad range of transactional and litigation practice areas include corporate and commercial law, with specialized groups focusing on M&A, securities, corporate finance and venture capital transactions, as well as regulatory, real estate, taxation, intellectual property and high-tech. Additional information about Shiboleth LLP can be found at http://www.shiboleth.com.

About Gaia Real Estate

Gaia Real Estate, founded in 2009, is a Real Estate investment, property management and brokerage Company with headquarters in New York City and additional offices in New Jersey, Texas and Israel. Gaia pursues a range of real estate investments with a focus on residential and commercial properties. The group currently has 70 employees. Additional information about Gaia Real Estate can be found at http://www.gaiare.com.

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Oren Heiman
Shiboleth LLP
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