Greystone, a commercial real estate lending, investment and advisory company, is adding two executives to a mortgage bond lending team.

Harris Heller, a managing director based in Philadelphia, and Nicholas Diamond, a director based in New York, both report to Robert Russell, head of commercial mortgage-backed securities production at Greystone.

Heller joins from RAIT Financial Trust, where he most recently served as a managing director. He has specialized in fixed- and floating-rate loan originations since 2013, sourcing more than $400 million in deal volume. At Greystone, Heller will focus on CMBS, bridge and agency lending for owners of all property types.

Diamond joins Greystone from Pillar Multifamily, where he was a vice president and underwriter for two years. He also served as a managing partner at beverage start-up Riazul, and prior to that he spent six years at Credit Suisse in the real estate structured finance Group. At Greystone, Diamond will focus on CMBS as well as agency lending platforms such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

“As market dynamics continue to change, we want to ensure Greystone is able to provide a range of financing solutions for property owners to acquire or refinance and optimize their holdings across all regions and assets classes,” Russell said in a press release. “Both Harris and Nick bring complementary skills in loan origination to support the continued growth of our CMBS, agency, and portfolio lending capabilities, and we are thrilled they have joined the team," he added.

The hires come as a number of Greystone’s competitors have been cutting staff who specialize in CMBS lending as bond market volatility makes this business less attractive. RAIT, a publicly traded real estate investment trust, this morning reported a loss of $10 million for the first quarter. But company executives also said they remain committed to the CMBS market.

Speaking on a conference call, Scott Schaeffer, RAIT’s chairman and CEO, said that conduit lending “continues to be attractive on a fee and income basis, coupled with an acceptable level of risk.”

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