ACRE News Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results

Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results

News

Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results

Jul

30

2015

 

ARES COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE CORPORATION REPORTS SECOND QUARTER 2015 RESULTS

 

Net Income of $9.0 million or $0.31 per diluted common share

 

Declared third quarter 2015 dividend of $0.25 per common share

 

Raising full-year 2015 EPS guidance range to $1.12 - $1.18

 

JUNE 30, 2015 FINANCIAL RESULTS

 

Chicago, IL — July 30, 2015 - Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation (the “Company,” “ACRE,” “we,” or “our”) (NYSE:ACRE), a specialty finance company primarily engaged in principal lending and mortgage banking of commercial real estate investments, reported net income of $9.0 million or $0.31 per diluted common share for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. In addition, the Company announced that its Board of Directors declared a third quarter 2015 dividend of $0.25 per common share payable on October 15, 2015 to common stockholders of record on September 30, 2015.

 

“We are pleased to report that our second quarter earnings increased 35% compared to the same period a year ago, driven by growth in both our Principal Lending and Mortgage Banking segments,” said Todd Schuster, President and Chief Executive Officer of ACRE.  “We continue to execute well against our goal of expanding earnings with our existing capital base and we have identified additional strategies to further enhance earnings going forward.  Given our positive outlook and the breadth and strength of our business, we are significantly increasing our annual earnings guidance range for 2015.”

 

2015 GUIDANCE UPDATE

 

For the year ending December 31, 2015, the Company is increasing its estimated net income per diluted common share to be between $1.12 to $1.18.

 

The Company’s guidance is based upon management’s current expectations regarding (1) the timing and amount of, and returns on, originations in the Principal Lending and Mortgage Banking segments in the Company’s existing pipeline, (2) the timing and amount of repayments in the Principal Lending and Mortgage Banking segments, (3) the availability and cost, including advance rates, of additional debt capital to fund new investments and commitments on existing investments, refinance existing indebtedness and for general corporate working capital purposes, (4) interest rate volatility, (5) change in the fair value of mortgage servicing rights and derivatives held by the Company, (6) taxation associated with the Company’s taxable REIT subsidiaries (“TRS”), including most significantly the TRS that holds the Mortgage Banking segment, (7) changes in the Company’s operating costs and expenses, (8) impact of raising additional debt or equity capital and (9)  material acquisitions or dispositions by the Company. The Company’s guidance is also based on current expectations of market conditions, including but not limited to the level of lending and borrowing spreads, commercial real estate loan volumes and government-sponsored enterprise activity and the judgment of the Company’s management team. There is no guarantee or assurance that such activities will occur as expected or at all. The Company’s earnings estimates are forward-looking statements and are subject to risks and other factors described elsewhere in this press release. The Company will discuss the earnings estimates on its July 30, 2015 conference call. Actual events or conditions may differ materially from these assumptions and therefore, actual results may vary significantly.

 

THREE MONTHS ENDED JUNE 30, 2015 FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

 

Financial Results and Activities: 

  • For the three months ended June 30, 2015, net income was $9.0 million or $0.31 per diluted common share, comprised of $6.8 million net income for the Principal Lending segment and $2.2 million net income for the Mortgage Banking segment.
  • For the Principal Lending segment, total lending volume was $60.5 million for the three months ended June 30, 2015, including new originations of $39.0 million in commitments ($36.5 million in outstanding principal) and an additional $21.5 million of fundings on existing commitments.  Loan repayments totaled $10.0 million in outstanding principal for the three months ended June 30, 2015.
  • For the Mortgage Banking segment, originations for the three months ended June 30, 2015 totaled $233.0 million in commitments.

 

 Capital Activities:  

  • In April 2015, ACRE Capital LLC (“ACRE Capital”) temporarily increased the aggregate commitment of the Bank of America warehouse facility from $135.0 million to $185.0 million for the period April 15, 2015 to June 1, 2015.
  • In May 2015, the Company entered into a $50.0 million Bridge Loan Warehousing Credit and Security Agreement with Bank of America, N.A. pursuant to which the Company may finance eligible commercial mortgage loans collateralized by healthcare facilities and other multifamily properties.

  

PRINCIPAL LENDING SEGMENT AS OF JUNE 30, 2015

 

At June 30, 2015, within its Principal Lending segment, the Company had originated or co-originated 41 loans held for investment (excluding 17 loans totaling $505.2 million in outstanding principal that were repaid since inception and one loan totaling $75.0 million in outstanding principal transferred to loans held for sale within the Company’s consolidated balance sheet) totaling approximately $1.4 billion in commitments and $1.2 billion in outstanding principal, excluding non-controlling interests held by third parties.

  

Portfolio Interest Rate, Yield and Remaining Life Summary ($ in millions, except percentages):

  

 

As of June 30, 2015

 

 

Carrying
Amount (1)

 

Outstanding
Principal (1)

 

Weighted
Average
Interest Rate

 

Weighted Average
Unleveraged
Effective Yield (2)

 

Weighted
Average
Remaining
Life (Years)

 

Senior mortgage loans

$

1,001.8

 

$

1,007.7

 

4.4%

 

5.0%

 

1.8

 

Subordinated debt and preferred equity investments

193.6

 

196.0

 

10.6%

 

11.0%

 

6.4

 

Total loans held for investment portfolio (excluding non-controlling interests held by third parties)

$

1,195.4

 

$

1,203.7

 

5.4%

 

6.0%

 

2.5

 

  


 (1)   The difference between the Carrying Amount and the Outstanding Principal face amount of the loans held for investment consists of unamortized purchase discount, deferred loan fees and loan origination costs.  The table above excludes non-controlling interests held by third parties. See reconciliation below of the Carrying Amount as included within the Company’s consolidated balance sheets.

 

(2)   Unleveraged Effective Yield is the compounded effective rate of return that would be earned over the life of the investment based on the contractual interest rate (adjusted for any deferred loan fees, costs, premium or discount) and assumes no dispositions, early prepayments or defaults. The Total Weighted Average Unleveraged Effective Yield is calculated based on the average of Unleveraged Effective Yield of all loans held by the Company as of June 30, 2015 as weighted by the Outstanding Principal balance of each loan.

 

As of June 30, 2015, 90% of the Principal Lending segment’s loans held for investment portfolio consisted of floating rate loans and 84% consisted of senior mortgage loans, respectively (as measured by outstanding principal), excluding non-controlling interests held by third parties.

 

A reconciliation of ACRE’s loans held for investment portfolio, excluding non-controlling interests, to ACRE’s loans held for investment as shown within its consolidated balance sheets is as follows ($ in millions):

 

 

As of June 30, 2015

 

 

Carrying Amount

 

Outstanding Principal

 

Total loans held for investment portfolio (excluding non-controlling interests held by third parties)

$

1,195.4

 

$

1,203.7

 

Non-controlling interest investment held by third parties

83.3

 

83.3

 

Loans held for investment

$

1,278.7

 

$

1,287.0

 

   

Portfolio Diversification Summary as of June 30, 2015 (excluding non-controlling interests held by third parties):

 ($ in millions, except percentages)

  

PROPERTY TYPE

 

 

Outstanding
Principal

 

% of Portfolio

 

Multifamily

$

386.3

 

32%

 

Office

345.7

 

29%

 

Industrial

100.1

 

8%

 

Retail

102.6

 

9%

 

Mixed-use

104.2

 

9%

 

Healthcare

41.6

 

3%

 

Hotel

36.5

 

3%

 

Various

86.7

 

7%

 

Total

$

1,203.7

 

100%

 

  

GEOGRAPHIC MIX

  

 

Outstanding
Principal

 

% of Portfolio

 

Southeast

$

247.0

 

21%

 

Southwest

211.5

 

18%

 

Midwest

279.4

 

23%

 

West

150.6

 

12%

 

Mid-Atlantic/Northeast

228.5

 

19%

 

Diversified

86.7

 

7%

 

Total

$

1,203.7

 

100%

 

  

 

MORTGAGE BANKING SEGMENT (ACRE CAPITAL) AS OF JUNE 30, 2015

  

For the three months ended June 30, 2015, ACRE Capital originated $90.3 million in commitments of Fannie Mae Delegated Underwriting and Servicing (“Fannie Mae”) loans, $42.8 million in commitments of Federal Housing Administration (“HUD”) loans and $99.9 million in commitments of Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (“Freddie Mac”) loans.

  

As of June 30, 2015, ACRE Capital’s multifamily servicing portfolio consisted of 973 loans with an unpaid principal balance of $4.4 billion. The carrying value of ACRE Capital’s mortgage servicing rights was $60.1 million at June 30, 2015.

  

RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

  

On July 7, 2015, the Company originated a $22.1 million first mortgage loan on a multifamily property located in Arizona. At closing, the outstanding principal balance was approximately $22.1 million. The loan has an interest rate of LIBOR + 4.25% (plus origination and exit fees) subject to a 1.00% LIBOR floor and an initial term of one year.

 

On July 15, 2015, the Company sold to a third party a $75.0 million senior loan collateralized by office properties in California at a sale price equal to 100% of the par value of the loan.

  

On July 21, 2015, the Company exercised the one-year extension option on its $75.0 million revolving funding facility with City National Bank.  The extended maturity date of this facility is July 31, 2016.

  

As of July 29, 2015, ACRE Capital originated $61.9 million quarter to date in Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac or HUD loan commitments.

  

On July 30, 2015, the Company declared a cash dividend of $0.25 per common share for the third quarter of 2015. The third quarter 2015 dividend is payable on October 15, 2015 to common stockholders of record as of September 30, 2015.

  

INVESTMENT CAPACITY AND LIQUIDITY

 

As of July 29, 2015, the Company expects to have approximately $63 million in capital, either in cash or in approved but undrawn capacity under the Company’s secured funding agreements.  After holding in reserve $10 million in liquidity requirements, the Company expects to have approximately $53 million in capital available to fund additional loans, outstanding commitments on the Company’s existing loans and for other working capital purposes.  Assuming that the Company uses such amount as capital to make new investments and leverages such amount under its facilities at a debt-to-equity ratio in the range of 2:1 to 3:1, the Company has the capacity to fund $155 million to $210 million of additional senior loan investments.

 

As of July 29, 2015, the total unfunded commitments for the Company’s existing loans held for investment were approximately $124 million.  In addition, borrowings under the Company’s financing facilities were approximately $512 million (excluding warehouse lines of credit in connection with the Company’s Mortgage Banking segment), debt issued in the form of commercial mortgage-backed securities was approximately $62 million, debt issued in the form of collateralized loan obligations was approximately $247 million and debt issued in the form of convertible senior notes was approximately $69 million.

  

SECOND QUARTER 2015 DIVIDEND

 

On May 7, 2015, the Company declared a cash dividend of $0.25 per common share for the second quarter of 2015. The second quarter 2015 dividend was paid on July 15, 2015 to common stockholders of record as of June 30, 2015.

  

CONFERENCE CALL AND WEBCAST INFORMATION

 

On Thursday, July 30, 2015, the Company invites all interested persons to attend its webcast/conference call at 12:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) to discuss its second quarter 2015 financial results. Please visit the Investor Resources section of Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation’s website for a slide presentation that complements the earnings conference call.

  

All interested parties are invited to participate via telephone or the live webcast, which will be hosted on a webcast link located on the Home page of the Investor Resources section of the Company’s website at http://www.arescre.com. Please visit the website to test your connection before the webcast. Domestic callers can access the conference call by dialing (888)-317-6003. International callers can access the conference call by dialing +1(412)-317-6061. All callers will need to enter the Participant Elite Entry Number 2818659 followed by the # sign and reference “Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation” once connected with the operator. All callers are asked to dial in 10-15 minutes prior to the call so that name and company information can be collected. For interested parties, an archived replay of the call will be available through August 12, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. (Eastern Time) to domestic callers by dialing (877)-344-7529 and to international callers by dialing +1(412)-317-0088. For all replays, please reference conference number 10067139. An archived replay will also be available through August 12, 2015 on a webcast link located on the Home page of the Investor Resources section of the Company’s website.

 

ABOUT ARES COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE CORPORATION

 

Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation is a specialty finance company primarily engaged in principal lending and mortgage banking of commercial real estate investments. Through its national direct origination platform, Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation provides a broad offering of flexible financing solutions for commercial real estate owners and operators. Through ACRE Capital LLC, its Mortgage Banking subsidiary, it originates and services multifamily residential mortgage loans, senior housing and healthcare facility loans by utilizing programs overseen by governmental agencies and government-sponsored entities. Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation elected and qualified to be taxed as a real estate investment trust and is externally managed by a subsidiary of Ares Management, L.P. (“Ares Management”) (NYSE:ARES). Ares Management is a publicly traded, leading global alternative asset manager with approximately $87 billion of assets under management as of March 31, 2015. For more information, please visit www.arescre.com. The contents of such website are not, and should not be deemed to be, incorporated by reference herein.

  

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

 

Statements included herein or on the webcast / conference call, including the Company’s estimated earnings per share for the full year 2015, may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended and Section 21E of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, which relate to future events or the Company’s future performance or financial condition.  These statements are not guarantees of future performance, condition or results and involve a number of risks and uncertainties.  Actual results could differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors, including the returns on current and future investments, rates of repayments and prepayments on the Company’s mortgage loans, availability of investment opportunities, the Company’s ability to originate additional investments and completion of pending investments, the availability of capital, the availability and cost of financing, market trends and conditions in the Company’s industry and the general economy, the level of lending and borrowing spreads, commercial real estate loan volumes, government-sponsored enterprise activity and other risks described from time to time in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  Any forward-looking statement, including any contained herein, speaks only as of the time of this release and Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation undertakes no duty to update any forward-looking statements made herein or on the webcast/conference call, including the Company’s estimated earnings per share for the full year 2015. Projections and forward-looking statements are based on management’s good faith and reasonable assumptions, including the assumptions described herein.

  

AVAILABLE INFORMATION

  

Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, press releases, earnings releases and other financial information are available on its website at www.arescre.com.  The contents of such website are not and should not be deemed to be incorporated by reference herein.

 

 

CONTACTS

  

Carl Drake or John Stilmar

 

Ares Commercial Real Estate Corporation

 

888-818-5298