INSIGHT

Pretium Taps Former Lehman Legal Head for Bankruptcy Expertise

June 3, 2020

(Bloomberg) June 3, 2020 — Pretium Partners hired former Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. general counsel Matthew Cantor as the hedge fund seeks to expand its capabilities in bankruptcy and distressed debt investing.

Cantor will be a senior managing director at the firm, according to a statement viewed by Bloomberg. He will be based in New York and work with around 25 investment professionals in Pretium’s credit arm.

Cantor, who has worked in distressed credit and bankruptcy situations for more than 20 years, was most recently general counsel and executive vice president of legal affairs at Lehman Brothers. Earlier, he was a founding principal at distressed credit fund Normandy Hill Capital. He was also a partner at Weil, Gotshal & Manges and Kirkland & Ellis, where he represented debtors, creditors and investors as part of those firms’ restructuring practices.

“As corporate America recovers from the effects of the global pandemic, we look forward to leveraging Matt’s unique insights,” Donald Mullen, Pretium’s chief executive officer and founder, said in the statement.

Hedge funds and banks are racing to add employees with restructuring and bankruptcy experience as the Covid-19 pandemic disrupts businesses around the world. Government bailouts and support by the Federal Reserve fueled a market rebound and helped lift hundreds of billions of dollars of debt from distressed levels, but the amount of troubled U.S. company debt is still twice what it was just before Covid-19 was declared a pandemic, Bloomberg datashows.

Pretium was founded in 2012 and has $14.6 billion of assets under management. It focuses on investments in real estate, residential housing debt and corporate and structured credit.

The firm acquired event-driven distressed investment firm Latigo Partners in February to expand its credit investments. Latigo co-founders David Ford and David Sabath joined Pretium as senior managing directors and remain portfolio managers of Latigo’s investments.