Pepper Money, the lending division of Pepper (UK) Limited, has today announced the establishment of a project to create a new entity to seek authorisation for a banking licence from the Bank of England and a number of key senior hires to support this initiative.
The lender, which entered the UK mortgage market in 2015 and has quickly established a well-respected brand and proposition in the specialist lending sector, has commenced initial discussions with the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
Laurence Morey, Chief Executive Officer of Pepper Money, commented: "Pepper Money has had a strong entry into specialist residential and buy to let mortgage lending in the UK and this move is designed to further strengthen our ability to support those customers who are under served by high street lenders. It will enable Pepper to expand the range of solutions we provide to our core customers – including people with complex incomes, the self-employed, those who fall outside high street credit scoring, first- time buyers and buy to let landlords – as well as securing more diverse funding sources for the business in the form of retail deposit funding. We will also be considering targeted acquisitions to further the range of solutions we can provide for our customers as part of our growth plans. "
Colin Snowdon, Managing Director of Pepper Money said:
"It's been a privilege and pleasure to lead the growth of Pepper Money over the last two and a half years, from its first steps through to its current leading position as a specialist lender, focused on the growing number of interesting customers. Our success has been down to a great team and to strong support from distributors, brokers, funders and our shareholders. Their backing has enabled us to build the foundations on which to build a strong bank".
In order to support the move towards becoming a bank, Pepper Money has strengthened its leadership team with the following appointments, which will be subject to regulator approval:
John Maltby – Non-executive Chair
John Maltby joins as Chair. John's career in financial services has been very distinguished with positions at PWC, Barclays and NatWest before becoming Chief Executive of Kensington Group in 2000. He went on to become Group Commercial Director of Lloyds Banking Group in 2007 for five years and was also CEO of Williams & Glyn, before moving in to non-executive roles in 2015. John chaired BlueStep Bank and the Risk & Audit Committee of Tandem Bank and currently holds non-executive roles with Bank of Ireland and Simplyhealth.
David Bowles – Chief Risk Officer
David has 25 years' experience as a risk management professional working in a number of financial services providers including GE Capital, Northern Rock Plc, Cattles Plc and Allied Irish Bank. In recent years, he has worked with a number of new entrant UK challenger banks including Shawbrook Bank and Monzo.
Bob Golden – Chief Commercial Officer
Bob Golden arrives as Chief Commercial Officer following 17 years with Close Brothers on the Board of the Bank and Chief Executive Officer of the retail division. Bob has a wealth of experience in lending covering; motor, mortgage, invoice, retail and premium finance. At Pepper, Bob will be responsible for driving the commercial development of the existing residential and buy to let lending businesses as well as developing new markets.
The new appointments join the existing Pepper Money team of:
Laurence Morey – Chief Executive Officer
Laurence Morey is the CEO of Pepper Money in the UK and was one of the original founders of the Pepper platform in the UK. He has been with the Pepper Group, and its predecessor companies, for the past 12 years covering a wide number of roles. Previously he was a Principal at Nikko Principal Investments following his move to the UK from South Africa where he worked for Ernst & Young for four years.
Warren Justice – Chief Financial Officer
Warren Justice joined Pepper Money in the UK as CFO four years ago following roles as CFO of Lapithus Servicing LLP and Director of Finance at Principality Building Society.
Richard Spinks – Chief Operating Officer
Richard Spinks joined Pepper in 2016 to build out the lending operations for the Pepper Money mortgage business. He has previously built the operations for Saffron Building Society and Aldermore in a 27-year career in financial services, which includes roles at Mortgages Plc, Merrill Lynch, Platform Home Loans and Britannia Building Society.
Colin Snowdon – Managing Director
Having joined Pepper Money in its infancy, Colin has grown the business to become one of the leading and most respected players in the specialist lending market. He continues to lead the mortgage business and is looking forward to transitioning to a strategic advisory role in 2019.
Laurence Morey, Chief Executive Officer of Pepper Money, said: "It's an exciting time for Pepper as we look to convert our specialist lending platform into a leading specialist bank and I am delighted to welcome John, David and Bob to the firm. It's a tribute to the strength of Pepper's achievements that we have been able to attract such high calibre individuals and I look forward to working with them all.
I'm also delighted that Colin Snowdon has agreed to extend his involvement with the firm. Colin has led the creation of Pepper Money as a specialist lender and built the business into what it is today – a much respected and admired lender in the market – for which he deserves our gratitude. I look forward to continuing to work with Colin.'