January 2019
Rialto is now out at the bridge lending firm it co-founded with Fortune International Group

Rialto is out and Related is in at Vaster Capital.

Fortune International Group is now partnering with the Related Group as its Vaster Capital expands into commercial lending. Fortune and Rialto partnered to launch the bridge lending firm in 2017 and Vaster has since closed more than $150 million of loans for residential properties in South Florida.

Lennar Corp. recently sold Rialto Investment and Asset Management to the private equity firm Stone Point Capital for $340 million, and Fortune had the opportunity to buy back Rialto’s ownership in Vaster Capital, said Edgardo Defortuna, president and CEO of Fortune.

Rialto’s involvement limited Vaster Capital’s lending to residential, but now the firm is expanding to commercial and land lending. Loans offered typically start from about $300,000 to $500,000 and increase from there. Vaster plans to provide loans totaling about $150 million in 2019, Defortuna said.

The partnership is an expansion of a joint venture Fortune had with Related to provide financing to buyers at Related projects represented by Fortune. Vaster has already lent to buyers at Related projects like Brickell Heights, SLS Lux and the Paraiso District, Defortuna said.

The partnership brings together two of South Florida’s largest condo developers. In addition to projects like Jade Signature and The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Sunny Isles Beach, Fortune handles sales and marketing for 16 developments totaling more than $6.1 billion, according to a release. And Related is the largest condo builder in Miami with more than 9,500 units either proposed, under construction or built since the cycle began in 2011.

While the firm will lend to local buyers as well, it’s focused more on providing loans to foreign buyers, and Defortuna said Vaster has more familiarity with the preconstruction condo market than other lenders. “It’s more applicable and more attractive to the buyer that doesn’t have banking relationships here and needs a quick solution for the next two or three years,” he added.

Vaster is offering loans with rates starting at 7.59 percent and no pre-payment penalties, as well as the ability to fix rates for its borrowers for periods of up to three years.