Capital-raising and investor-relations pro Ben Harris has set up his own firm.
Uncommon Capital of Chicago opened in the past month, focusing on raising equity for commercial real estate shops. Its first two clients are CRG, a development arm of Chicago construction firm Clayco that focuses on industrial and multi-family development, and Farpoint Development, a Chicago shop that invests in mixed-use projects.
While Harris is running his new firm independently, he will continue to fill the role of senior vice president at CRG, which he joined in February. He previously spent five years at Origin Investment of Chicago, where he built and led a capital-raising team and helped raise funds for investments in federal opportunity zones. He had a prior stint as an analyst at Starwood Retail Partners of Chicago.
Uncommon Capital is an “affiliate partner” of Stonehaven, a technology-focused broker-dealer. Stonehaven, of New York, is active in hedge funds, private equity, venture capital and, increasingly, real estate. It has 20 affiliate partners raising capital for 30 real estate mandates.
Uncommon is the fourth real estate firm Stonehaven has added this year to its online platform, which it calls Nexus. The first three were EverSky Capital of Chicago, Nomos Group of Denver and Park Lane of Santa Monica, Calif.
Stonehaven earns a share of affiliate firms’ revenue in exchange for access to its broker-dealer infrastructure, Nexus technology and its “collaborative ecosystem,” among other things. The firm has about 100 cross-marketing agreements where affiliate partners are collaborating to raise capital for each other’s mandates.
The shop, which began as a capital-raising operation and evolved into a platform for marketing firms, was founded in 2001 by chief executive David Frank.