Abacus Finance Group Adds Three to Staff and Promotes One

Abacus Finance Group said Tuesday that it has added three new members to its transaction team. Timothy Wong has been named a vice president; Eric Petersen has become an associate; and Chengyuan Zhao is now an analyst. Also, Sean McKeever, a senior vice president, has been promoted to head of underwriting and portfolio management. A New York-based specialty finance company, Abacus provides cash flow senior financing for private equity-sponsored, lower-middle market companies.


NEW YORK, NY, July 23, 2013 – Abacus Finance Group, LLC (Abacus), a New York-based specialty finance company, announced today that three investment professionals have been added to its transaction team, expanding the firm to eight members, and that Sean McKeever, a Senior Vice President, has been promoted to Head of Underwriting and Portfolio Management. Abacus focuses exclusively on providing cash flow senior financing for private equity-sponsored, lower-middle market companies.
The new team members are:
· Timothy Wong, who was named a Vice President of the firm and is responsible for originating, structuring, underwriting and executing new investments.
· Eric Petersen, an Associate who participates in the structuring, underwriting and executing new investments, as well as engaging in portfolio management.
· Chengyuan Zhao, an Analyst, who assists in structuring, underwriting and executing new investments, in addition to portfolio management responsibilities.
“Our continued steady growth is the principal reason for the three new hires, all of whom are experienced professionals with strong backgrounds,” said Tim Clifford, President and CEO of Abacus. “We had reached a point where we needed additional resources to serve our private equity clients and monitor a growing loan investment portfolio. As a co-founder of the firm, Sean has been instrumental in Abacus’ growth and success. His appointment to Head of Underwriting and Portfolio Management recognizes the significant leadership contributions he has made as we successfully built our business and laid the groundwork for our next stage of growth.”
Mr. McKeever is a founding member of Abacus, with more than ten years of experience in leveraged finance. Previously, he was a First Vice President and founding member of Amalgamated Capital, where he led the underwriting of senior-debt financing. Prior to that, Mr. McKeever was a Vice President at Churchill Financial and was a founding member of the Leveraged Finance Group at Comerica Bank. He began his career as an Analyst/Trader in the secondary securitized and unsecuritized mortgage debt market. Mr. McKeever earned an M.S. in Financial Economics, with Highest Distinction, from Boston University and a B.S. in Business Administration from Babson College.
Before joining Abacus, Mr. Wong was a Vice President and founding member of the Leveraged Finance Group at U.S. Bancorp in New York. Prior to that, he served as an Assistant Vice President at CIT Asset Management in Norwalk, CT and as a Senior Associate with American Capital in New York. He began his career as an investment banking analyst in the Syndicated and Leveraged Finance Group at JPMorgan in New York. He earned his B. A. in Economics with a Concentration in Finance at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Prior to joining Abacus, Mr. Petersen was a Leveraged Finance Associate in the Merchant Banking Group at BNP Paribas. Earlier he served as an Associate in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group at General Electric in Atlanta, GA. A graduate of the United States Naval Academy and a naval officer, he served for over ten years as an F/A-18 fighter pilot. At the Naval Academy, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in English. Subsequently, he earned an M.B.A. from the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business and an M.S., Quantitative and Computational Finance from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Previously, Mr. Zhao worked in New York in BNP Paribas’ Merchant Banking Group as a Leveraged Finance Analyst. Earlier he was part of the Private Equity group at CapitalSpring Finance Company and on the Investment Banking team at Chart Group Advisors. Mr. Zhao earned a B.S. in Finance and Economics from the Leonard N. Stern School of Business at New York University.
About Abacus Finance Group, LLC
Abacus Finance, headquartered in New York, is a lower-middle market specialty finance company, focused on providing cash flow senior financing to private equity-sponsored companies nationwide. Formed in June 2011, Abacus targets debt financing opportunities of up to $50 million with a typical hold size ranging from $10 million to $30 million, and the companies it finances generally have EBITDA between $3 million and $15 million. Abacus is an affiliate of New York Private Bank & Trust, the holding company for Emigrant Bank, which was founded in 1850 and is the largest family-owned bank in America.
Abacus is headquartered at 6 East 43rd Street, 20th Floor, New York, NY 10017. All inquiries and new investment opportunities should be directed to Tim Clifford at 212-850-4620 or to cliffordt@abacusfinance.com. Visit abacusfinance.com for more information.