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Seems simple enough; mezzanine is junior debt that resides between the senior debt and equity on the balance sheet, hence the name mezzanine, a word that evolved from the Latin for “in the middle”. Well, in this case the dictionary definition only tells half the story.

The meaning of the term “non-sponsored transaction” has undergone much change over the years as the mezzanine market servicing such deals has evolved. Originally, a non-sponsored deal was simply a mezzanine transaction lacking a buyout fund sponsor.