Exclusive: Ex-Dragonfly trio to launch Octane Capital in May

The founder of Dragonfly Property Finance, Jonathan Samuels, will launch a new specialist lender in May, joined by former colleagues Mark Posniak and Matt Smith.

Octane Capital will offer residential and commercial bridging loans, medium-term buy-to-let products and development finance, primarily through brokers and master brokers.

The new lender is a joint venture with investment management firm Pamplona Capital Management, which manages funds in excess of $5bn.

Samuels founded Dragonfly – since rebranded as Octopus Property – in 2009 and left in late 2015. Last month Mortgage Strategy revealed that he would be establishing a rival specialist lender this year.

Samuels will take on the role of chief executive at Octane and will be reunited with former Dragonfly colleagues Mark Posniak and Matt Smith, who will assume the positions of managing director and director of risk respectively.

Posniak and Smith held the same role at Dragonfly, until their departure in November 2016 to join Samuels in the new venture.

Tom Clark, who was previously head of bridging at Wellesley and senior development manager at Shawbrook Bank, will also join Octane Capital as sales director.

Further hires to date include former Dragonfly finance manager Robert Graham as head of finance and Octane is continuing to recruit for development, credit and sales roles.

Samuels says: “It’s fantastic to be back in the industry and working again with some of the most respected names in specialist property finance. In Pamplona we have an exceptionally strong and experienced funding partner that will position us well from the outset and enable us to lend at will. Our focus will be on complex, non-standard loans that are outside the comfort zone of most other lenders but which we believe play to our strengths. We are certainly not here to make up the numbers.”

Octane Capital’s initial product range will be announced in May when it formally launches in May.