Bridger Commercial Funding, a real estate lending company founded last year, originated $50 million of commercial mortgages in the first quarter.

Many of the borrowers had applied for loans last autumn when the commercial mortgage-backed securities market was in a rut, said Robert Schonefeld, a principal in the firm.

"While the so-called conduit lenders were out of the market, we were very much active," Mr. Schonefeld said.

Bridger, which originates through small community banks, plans to contribute its loans to the collateral pool for an offering of commercial mortgage-backed bonds to be distributed by Prudential Securities.

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