In The Loop founder unsurprised by decision to ditch broker brand

Linda Will, sales and marketing director and founder of In The Loop Mortgages, says she was unsur-prised by last week’s decision to axe the intermediary brand.

Stroud & Swindon Building Society originally set up ITL Mortgages in 2008. But when Stroud & Swindon was taken over by Coventry Building Society in March 2010, questions were asked as to how ITL Mortgages would co-exist with Coventry Intermediaries and Godiva Mortgages.

Will says: “Coventry Intermediaries offered the same pricing through the society and brokers, whereas Stroud & Swindon took the opposite view in pricing differently for each distribution channel. This meant at times there were better rates on either side.

“If you weren’t going to keep that rate differential there was virtually no rational for keeping an addi-tional intermediary brand.”

It was also announced last week that Will would leave the newly enlarged society on August 31.

Dev Malle, group sales director at Personal Touch Financial Services, says that while it is always sad to see a brand go, it was not bad news for the broker market.

He says: “ITL Mortgages was not doing a lot of lending and Coventry has a stronger platform to offer better products to intermediaries via Coventry Intermediaries and Godiva. Coventry has always been supportive of the broker market.”

The decision to axe ITL Mortgages was announced just before the mutual unveiled a record 20% jump in pre-tax profits to £43.5m for the first half of 2010.

Figures from January to June also show underlying profit before tax increased by a whopping 40% to £46.5m. Gross mortgage lending was £1.6bn, while net mortgage lending stands at £751m.

David Stewart, chief executive of Coventry Building Society, says: “These results maintain our record of strong performance since the onset of the credit crisis.”