Beacon hit the headlines last October after Mark Abbott, the enigmatic former chief executive at Future Mortgages, and Brian Pitt, Future's former sales director, took a near-50% stake in the financial services firm run by Simon Goldthorpe and George Kahn.
A swathe of former Future Mortgages staff including sales maestro Clive Wilson have since joined the company and sources says Town-send's appointment could be the final piece of the jigsaw before it turns itself into a lender.
Pitt has had a long association with Townsend, having first worked with him for Household Mortgage Corporation back in the 1980s, and both have extensive lending experience. Townsend joins the Beacon group in October.
Beacon has a diverse group structure. On the IFA side it deals with traditional life business as well as having an investment management arm, together with a direct to consumer mortgage broking business.
Last year Beacon created a mortgage packaging arm dealing with other mortgage brokers and quickly built a business model based on a successful service proposition.
It is a member of RAMP and received its MTA letter from the FSA in August.
Pitt declined to comment on market speculation but says: “We are looking forward to Andrew joining us and helping to drive forward our plans for the group. He has a proven record and I am sure he will add value to our business.”