HJ Sims, a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm, and mergers and acquisitions advisor Vertess have announced physical and staff expansions that are a response, at least in part, to the COVID-19 crisis.

Vertess officials said there was some initial interruption and unpredictability in the market after state-wide shutdowns began, they’ve seen “forward momentum” in the past few weeks.  The firm expects stalled deals to resume and activity to be robust for the remainder of the year.

“Although the M&A markets have been a bit choppy, we still see great prospects for 2020,” said Bradley Smith, VERTESS managing director/partner. “We are excited to expand our team and, thereby, our reach to the healthcare community. As always, even during this extraordinary period, we are committed to ensuring owners achieve their desired goals and outcomes.”

VERTESS added Matt Moebius, who has a long history in the home medical equipment industry, to its development team.

Meanwhile, HJ Sims added senior bankers as it opened two new offices in the Midwest and on the West Coast.

Lynn Daly joins Sims as executive vice president in its new Chicago location with more than 30 years’ experience working with nonprofit organizations in financing. Daly was acting head of senior living investment banking at BB&T Capital Markets, and she previously spearheaded the Catholic Initiative within senior living investment banking for Ziegler and was head of Allied Irish Bank’s Midwest region.

Daly earned an undergraduate degree in economics from Kalamazoo College and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

“Lynn’s extensive experience as both a senior commercial and investment banker, along with her integrity, deep knowledge, and client-centered approach, are vital characteristics and values that will guide our clients and business partners through these challenging times,” said Sims Managing Principal Aaron Rulnick.

Brady Johnson joins Sims as senior vice president in its new west coast office in Orange County, CA. Previously with Hunt Real Estate Capital, Johnson was responsible for real estate debt originations for seniors housing and healthcare properties. He helped establish the firm’s seniors housing real estate lending platform, including a proprietary bridge loan program and expansion of the firm’s agency and HUD financing capabilities. 

Johnson closed the firm’s first Fannie Mae seniors housing loan, followed by its first seniors housing Freddie Mac loan. Before joining Hunt, Johnson was director of seniors housing and healthcare at RED Capital Group and served with GE Capital in various commercial finance roles.

Johnson earned an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management and undergraduate degrees in economics and Spanish from the University of Utah.