Norwich Union has agreed to sell the Norwich Union Mortgage Club to Bankhall, one of the UK&#39s leading suppliers of intermediary services.

Mortgage Strategy exclusively revealed news of the groundbreaking deal this morning. The sale is expected to complete by the end of the first week in May 2004.

NUMC is currently the fourth biggest mortgage broker club in the UK, representing 35 lenders and distributing mortgages through more than 7,000 intermediaries. In 2003, NUMC brokered almost £8bn worth of mortgage applications.

Bankhall will increase its combined control of UK mortgage lending to over £38 billion and its combined total intermediary membership base to over 43,000 with the acquisition of the Norwich Union Mortgage Club.  

This deal, combined with the recent acquisition of Premier Mortgage Service and the strategic alliance with Paymentshield will put Bankhall in a dominating position with lenders and make it an attractive proposition for intermediaries leading up to FSA regulation.

Norwich Union sales and marketing director Peter Hales says: “With the onset of regulatory change in the mortgage market, intermediaries who have supported NUMC will require additional services such as authorisation and compliance.

“The sale of NUMC to Bankhall will give intermediaries access to these services. We will continue to work closely with our distribution partners to help them capitalise on the opportunities offered by the mortgage market.”

Paul Hogarth, chief executive of Bankhall, adds: “This acquisition gives Bankhall greater access to an even wider range of mortgage suppliers and enables us to offer an even better service to the intermediary mortgage market.

“This announcement further reinforces our objective of being the pre-eminent support services provider and takes us a step closer to our vision of a unique one-stop shop for mortgage and general insurance intermediaries as we move towards regulation later this year.”