Cohen & Co. last week opened a Los Angeles office for its middle market loan and CLO collateral management unit Emporia Capital Management. Cohen snagged David Ligon and Gary Kirshner from Union Bank of California, where they were group heads of the bank's equity sponsored lending team. The two join Cohen as managing directors.


The move will give Emporia a West Coast presence, as well as the ability to offer sponsored loan origination along with the unit's current middle market finance offerings, Chris Ricciardi, Cohen's chief executive, said.  


Emporia provides financing for middle market growth, buyouts, leveraged buildups and leveraged recap senior debt financings. Cohen's Emporia unit has two CDOs under management, the $425 million Emporia CDO I, which closed in October 2005, and the $365.9 million Emporia CDO II, which closed in June.

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