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Close Brothers gives vote of confidence in MI and Laker

UK merchant bank Close Brothers has set the record straight about its intentions for Mortgage Intelligence.

Speaking exclusively to Mortgage Strategy Robin Sellers, Close Brothers group secretary, says the business is going strong and looking to acquire other networks. He says: “We are always looking for acquisitions to build the company and compete. We are committed to Mortgage Intelligence and happy with the business.”

Seller quashes rumours Close Brothers had ruled out buying smaller networks and also put a stop to speculation that managing director Sally Laker is leaving the firm.

He says: “Laker has been fantastic for the business and we are pleased with her performance. She is a part of Mortgage Intelligence’s future. Her job is in no way threatened.”

One source tells MS that MI is suffering financial loss after investing too much in technology and having too few ARs. But Sellers says the company is in a good position and Laker will be able to lead it into profit next year.

He also dismisses rumours the network might close or replace Laker in the first quarter of next year.

He says: “We have no intention of closing or selling the business, we are committed to Mortgage Intelligence.”

MI says it has just completed a record month of business and that the company is going strong.


HSBC to open jazzed up branches

HSBC is to build 60 ‘super branches’ in a bid to jazz up banking for a younger generation. In a presentation to Skinners’ Company’s School for Girls in London last week, chief executive Michael Geoghegan let slip that in an attempt to make banking more exciting, the lender was planning to open around 60 large […]

Optoma extends deal with Kensington

Optoma Broker Solutions has revealed an agreement with Kensington, under which the cashback offered to clients on each product has increased from 250 to 1,000 (excluding near-prime, which has increased to 500), has been extended until the year end. Qualifying applications must be signed before December 31 2005.Andrew Seymour, chairman of Optoma, says: “Our close […]

Insurance brokers may have to disclose their commission

Insurance brokers may have to disclose their commission rates to clients if plans from the Financial Services Authority are implemented. If brokers’ don’t improve their handling of conflicts of interest under the Treating Customers Fairly policy, rules will be enforced by the FSA. This threat comes in the form of a letter to insurance brokers […]

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Johnson Fleming set to hold auto-enrolment support webinar

Two years since the process of auto-enrolment began, the looming re-enrolment deadline provides the perfect opportunity to assess whether the support you have in place, which may well have been hastily selected at the start, is fit for purpose. Johnson Fleming is holding a webinar on 10 September at 11:00 to discover the key issues and concerns you should consider when thinking about your current support options.


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