Secured lending platform Proplend cuts ties with GLI, makes senior appointments.
Proplend has officially cut ties with GLI Finance, a former shareholder in the company. Proplend’s original shareholders have agreed to purchase the outstanding ordinary and preference shares from GLI, thus ending the two companies’ working relationship. GLI has also supplied lending capital to the platform over the years. Proplend will continue to monitor and service the loans which were funded using GLI money until their maturation.
“Due to a divergence in the strategic direction of each business over recent months, it has been agreed that an end to the existing relationship was mutually beneficial,” said Brian Bartaby, founder and CEO of Proplend. “We would like to thank GLI Finance for their time as a shareholder and we wish them the best in the future.”
It’s been clear for some time that a split between Proplend and GLI was on the cards. CEO Andrew Whelan has been busily re-shaping GLI Finance since taking the reins from Geoff Miller at the tail-end of 2015. Of the many companies which GLI has held and continues to hold equity in, Whelan’s strategy involves focusing on just four going forwards. These “prioritised platforms” are The Credit Junction, LiftForward, Funding Options and Finexkap.
Proplend, which has so far lent a little over £1m in 2016, according to the Liberum AltFi Volume Index UK, has also made a pair of senior appointments in the past few days. Rupert Cottrell has joined the platform as non-executive chairman, having previously held senior positions with Cazenove, now JP Morgan Cazenove, and Hill Samuel, now part of the TSB Group. Cottrell also spent four years as a director of FIMBRA, the UK regulator which was succeeded by the FCA. He most recently served as Chairman at secured peer-to-peer lending outfit ThinCats.
Meanwhile Andrew Pinfield, who has been COO of a number of different real estate lending businesses at RBS, has joined the platform as head of risk and operations.
“I believe Proplend to be the leader in the exciting second generation of the peer to peer asset class and as such, am honoured to be offered the chair,” said Cottrell, commenting on his appointment. “I much hope my experience of the City, regulation and as a shareholder and former Chairman of ThinCats, will add value to Proplend and help to blend and cement the considerable skills sets within the Proplend management and staff.”
AltFi is returning to Amsterdam for its second annual Summit in the city. The inaugural event last year was a roaring success, with key figures from across Continental Europe's alternative finance and digital banking sectors highlighted. These included Jeroen Broekema, managing director of Funding Circle Netherlands, and Mieke van Engelen, head of innovative partnerships at ABN AMRO's standalone lending platform, New10.