NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Star Mountain Capital, LLC ("Star Mountain"), a specialized investment manager focused exclusively on the large and underserved U.S. lower middle-market, is pleased to announce that Stephen Paras has transitioned from a Star Mountain Operating Partner to a fulltime Managing Director & Investment Committee Member. Steve is another strong example of Star Mountain bringing proven large market expertise and resources to established, private smaller businesses as a differentiator for both the companies it invests in, as well as for the institutional and individual investors who are aligned with Star Mountain.
Mr. Paras is a leveraged finance and investment professional with over 30 years of experience. He has successfully structured and underwritten event-driven debt financings aggregating to over $50 billion across a variety of industries. Mr. Paras has held leadership roles as Managing Director and Head of U.S. Leveraged Loan Capital Markets at Merrill Lynch in New York as well as Managing Director and Head of EMEA Leveraged Loan Capital Markets at Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) in London.
His leadership experience included being a senior member of Merrill Lynch’s and BAML’s Leveraged Finance Commitment Committee responsible for leveraged loan underwriting and principal commitments of leveraged finance capital. He was a member of Merrill Lynch’s Mezzanine Investment Committee responsible for reviewing investment decisions and managing portfolio risk of a Merrill Lynch-sponsored mezzanine debt fund. Mr. Paras was also a member of Merrill Lynch’s Managing Director Nomination Committee and Merrill Lynch’s Leveraged Finance Operating Committee.
Prior to his distinguished 16-year career at BAML and predecessor firm Merrill Lynch, Mr. Paras spent six years at Chemical Bank’s leveraged buyout and syndicated finance groups.
Mr. Paras began his banking career at Chase Manhattan Bank and Citibank. He holds an MBA in Finance from University of Rochester, a BA in Economics from Hobart College, and is a CFA Charterholder.
At both Merrill Lynch and Chemical Bank (now JP Morgan Chase), Mr. Paras worked closely with Star Mountain Partner & Investment Committee Member Christopher Birosak who later went on to be a senior partner in Merrill Lynch’s $6 billion direct private equity investment business which included board leadership positions such as chairman of the audit committee of HCA, Inc. (NYSE:HCA with current market valuation of approximately $35 billion).
“Steve’s leadership experience, three decades of market knowledge and investment experience has proven to be of considerable value during his time as a personal investor and Operating Partner with Star Mountain. We are excited to now have him as a full-time partner with us to further the value our distinctive platform brings to investors and established small and medium-sized businesses,” said Christopher Birosak, Partner & Investment Committee Member at Star Mountain.
“Speaking on behalf of our entire team, we are honored to have another executive of Steve’s caliber and experience as an aligned partner with us,” said Brett Hickey Founder & CEO of Star Mountain.
“I was initially drawn to becoming a personal investor and Operating Partner by Star Mountain’s differentiated business model providing a bespoke solution to a large, more labor intensive, and underserved market where we believe superior risk-adjusted returns can be achieved, including through Star Mountain’s investment in technology and best practices approach toward underwriting excellence,” said Stephen Paras. “It was the engaging and aligned corporate culture and strong intellectual capital at Star Mountain which further drove my decision to join as a full-time partner.”
ABOUT STAR MOUNTAIN
Investing in the Growth Engine of America ® – Star Mountain Capital is a specialized asset management firm focused on investing in the large and underserved U.S. lower middle-market of companies with typically between $10 million and $150 million of annual revenues. Star Mountain’s distinctive business includes a custom-built media and technology platform and brings proven, large market resources to smaller businesses as a value-added lender and investment partner. Star Mountain was named one of the 2017 Best Places to Work by Crain's New York Business.
As part of its ESG, Star Mountain’s Charitable Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c)3 focuses on improving lives through economic development, including job creation, health & wellness and cancer research. Notable missions include helping match veterans and women with high quality small and medium-sized business career opportunities across the country, including within Star Mountain’s portfolio which in aggregate represents over 200 companies.