BMO Makes First Direct Equity Investment in Business Development with DL3 Realty Advisors

CHICAGO, February 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ – BMO Financial Group and DL3 Realty Advisors, LLC, a Black-owned commercial real estate development company whose business development model is leading a new wave of institutional investment in Chicago neighborhoods, today announced an equity partnership in the redevelopment of a vacant big-box store that will create 1,000 new jobs in the Chatham neighborhood on Chicago South side. This direct equity investment is the first of its kind in a commercial building for the bank and underlines the growing attractiveness of DL3’s institutional investment strategy focused on the revitalization of historically disinvested neighborhoods.

BMO $6 million the investment will fund improvements to the property located on South Cottage Grove Avenue in Chicago. The vacant 10-acre retail site is being redeveloped into a corporate call center and training center creating high quality jobs in the community. Located in a larger mall, at a busy intersection, and in a historically vibrant community, this was an excellent candidate for redevelopment.

“Private venture capital can be an agent of positive social change, and we need to find more ways for investment to flow into our neighborhoods,” said Leon I. Walker, CEO of DL3 . “We expect BMO’s equity investment as well as a long-term national lease in the Chatham encourage other business stakeholders to seek out equity investment opportunities that revitalize neighborhoods. »

Carl JenkinsManaging Director and Group Head of BMO’s Community Investments Group, added, “DL3 has transformed a large vacant commercial building into a high-impact community asset. This development is a perfect example of how conventional equity investing in neighborhoods requires a commitment to understanding real versus perceived risks. . We consistently find double-bottom line investment opportunities where venture capital can play a critical role in transforming communities without sacrificing risk-adjusted returns. The added bonus for me is that I was raised a few blocks from this property.

BMO’s Community Investments group helps developers and organizations by providing capital and financial expertise for projects with high social and economic impact in low- and middle-income communities. Their work supports BMO’s commitment to small business expansion, increased availability of quality, affordable housing, and targeted community commercial real estate.

The investment also supports BMO EMpower, a series of long-term commitments to help drive an inclusive economic recovery and address key barriers facing underserved businesses, communities and families. The program exceeded initial objectives with more than $2 billion commitments in the first 12 months of the program.

About DL3 Realty Advisors, LLC
DL3 is a full-service real estate development and advisory firm that uses its nationally-recognized business development model to transform historically disinvested communities with high-impact commercial developments and affordable housing projects targeting families. of workers. After a brilliant career in corporate real estate, Lawyer Leon I. Walker, CEO of DL3, has spent the past 20 years defying the odds with successful development projects that leverage innovative public-private partnerships and, in turn, inspire the next generation of enterprise developers. Over the past five years, DL3 projects have generated more than 3,000 local jobs, and DL3 is working with major U.S. corporations to invest and create 10,000 new jobs in Chicago neighborhoods by 2030.

About BMO Financial Group
Serving customers for 200 years and counting, BMO is a highly diversified financial services provider – the 8th largest bank, by assets, in North America. With total assets of 988 billion Canadian dollars from October 31, 2021and a diverse and highly engaged team of employees, BMO offers a wide range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management and investment banking products and services to more than 12 million customers and operates through the through three operating groups: Personal and Commercial Banking, BMO Wealth Management and BMO Capital Markets.

SOURCE BMO Financial Group

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