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Trepp Moves Beyond CMBS, Purchases Foresight Analytics

Trepp is extending its expertise in providing commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) information and broader industry data. In a deal finalized late Tuesday, Trepp announced that it had acquired research firm Oakland, Calif.-based Foresight Analytics.

The combined firepower of the two firms is expected to yield more detailed information on distressed commercial real estate assets underlying CMBS. The purchase price was not disclosed.

Foresight, a privately held firm founded by Matt Anderson and Susan Persin, provides information and analysis about the commercial real estate industry. “We’re staying in place. We’ll still be in Oakland,” says Anderson. “I think our focus is going to be generally the same as it has been — to do market analysis on the one hand, and work on debt markets. The fit with Trepp is really great on the debt side.”

Over the course of the nation’s economic downturn, Trepp has been a leading provider of information about distressed CMBS loans, and the company plans to rely on Foresight for additional information on those and broader commercial real estate trends in the future.

“The real genesis behind this deal with us was that Trepp historically has not been a pure commercial real estate shop,” says Andy Leibman, senior vice president at Trepp. With the continuing market turmoil, Foresight will be able to drill deeply into the details of distressed real estate to provide data and insights that could help investors, mortgage bankers, dealmakers and other professionals as they make financial decisions.

“[Foresight will] come in and provide much more commercial real estate perspective, and add that to what our clients really need as they look for the underlying assets behind CMBS,” says Leibman.

Foresight will provide analysis and insight into property performance in specific regions as well as overall market performance in those locations, explains Leibman. “Right now we track everything that is in the securitized debt market. And with that we have a tremendous amount of information on what assets are distressed, so I think what this does is add more complementary information and data to give people more color behind certain assets and areas that may be dealing with distressed debt,” he notes.

Anderson and Persin have joined Trepp as managing directors and will continue to rely on their team of outside consultants, says Leibman.

Trepp already has begun to link its Web site with that of Foresight Analytics. Over the next several weeks, more Foresight products will be made available on Trepp’s site. Research from Foresight also will be available to clients of Trepp’s CMBS Analytics and TreppLoan products.

It is not yet certain whether Foresight’s name will change. “I don’t know what the name will be, but it’s a wonderful brand, so we do expect to keep the name,” says Leibman. The merger will expand Foresight’s audience and resources, said Persin.

The deal with Trepp has quietly been in the works for a long time, says Anderson, although he declined to say when it was initiated. “We’re excited. We think it’s a great boost for Foresight Analytics, and we think we’ll be adding a lot of value to Trepp.”

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