By Holly Dutton
Jordan Fisch never pictured himself as a powerful New York attorney.
“I never wanted to be a lawyer or live and work in New York,” he told Real Estate Weekly. “When was coming out of college, I was contemplating pursuing a JD/PhD program to be a forensic psychologist. By the time I got started in law school, I thought, ‘This isn’t too bad.’ But even coming out of law school, I wasn’t too sure.”
He’s sure now.
Fisch, co-chair of Cole Schotz’s Corporate Department and a member of Department and Real Estate Special Opportunities Practice Group, has been with the firm since 2000.
A native of northern New Jersey, he graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in psychology, and went onto earn his J.D. from the University of Miami.
After graduating from law school, he joined the now-defunct firm of Ravin Sarasohn in Roseland, N.J. where his late father was a partner.
Five years later, he joined Cole Schotz. As an attorney who works in both the corporate and real estate departments at the firm, his real estate work is with opportunity funds in joint ventures, acquisition and disposition of secured and distressed debt, and mezzanine commercial mortgage financing.
On the corporate side, Fisch counsels on both sides of merging and acquisition transactions, debt and equity offerings, and secured and asset-based credit facilities. He also counsels closely-held and family-owned businesses with corporate advice.
A self-confessed “deal junkie,ˮ he said he finds complex finance deals exciting. He has worked with several big commercial real estate firms, including Savanna and Torchlight Investors, and real estate investment funds.
“I really enjoy working with these clients,” said Fisch. “I hope to continue to work on interesting and thought-provoking deal structures for our fund clients, who are looking at opportunities to take a distressed asset or asset that’s on the bubble and get in there, refurbish, renovate and improve the asset and flip it.”
Five years ago when “debt buys were the craze,” Fisch worked on one of his biggest deals with a real estate opportunity fund in the acquisition of a more than $150 million interest in a first mortgage loan secured by a portfolio of Class A office buildings in the Washington D.C./Virginia area.
“It was good because it was a good debt buy, and they subsequently sold off a piece of that note,” said Fisch, who sees the current market as strong.
“There’s only so many projects that can go on in the city,” he said. “Lender clients are putting out money all over the country and opportunity funds are taking advantage of good yields out there.”
Fisch is currently working on a handful of deals with clients ranging from mezzanine lenders to opportunity funds looking to acquire distressed properties that they’ll renovate. He represents developers in New Jersey and New York City who are active and building again, and are looking at sites.
He’s working with the builders to arrange a package that will accommodate a new ground-up development.
“Seeing a client have a great result, whether they bought a note, or they foreclosed or did a workout with a borrower and ultimately the property stabilized, sell it later and get great return, I feel like that’s a great victory,” said Fisch. “I enjoy seeing the process from beginning to end.”
A favorite pastime is strolling through the city and looking up at buildings he has done deals on.
“That’s kind of fun,” he said. A resident of the Upper West Side, Fisch spends his free time playing baseball with his two young sons and watching sports, a subject that is close to home.
Fisch’s brother Jedd is the offensive co-ordinator for the Jacksonville Jaguars NFL team, a job he started in January after previously working with The University of Miami Hurricanes, and NFL teams the Seattle Seahawks and the Baltimore Ravens, among others.