Spanish move may see sourcing merger

Banco Santander\'s take-over of Alliance & Leicester could lead to the merging of Trigold and Mortgage Brain, it has emerged.

Santander already owns Abbey, which is a significant shareholder in Trigold, and will soon own A&L – one of six lenders that own Mortgage Brain.

One insider says the merger of the two brands would be a logical move.

They say: “It certainly passes the common sense test – particularly in the area of electronic trading where Mortgage Brain’s Mortgage Trading Exchange is dominant.”

In June Mortgage Strategy exclusively revealed that Trigold was en-tertaining bids for its system.

A £20m sale price had previously been slapped on Trigold but experts now say that in the wake of the credit crunch, valuing the system is nearly impossible.

Martin Colyer, managing director of Trigold, says that rumours of a sale have been circulating for some time but a single sourcing system would not be good for the wider market.

He says: “I don’t think a single sourcing system or a monopoly in any market is a good idea.

“Competition leads to keener pricing as competitors seek to differentiate themselves from their rivals.”

John Cupis, managing director of mortgages and general insurance at Sesame, says: “The most important thing about sourcing systems is that they provide accurate Key Facts Illustrations.

“What is happening with Trigold and Mortgage Brain is that they still suffer from inaccuracies so anything that improves and addresses this is a good thing.”

He adds: “You might hope that a combined sourcing system would be able to address this problem as long as it doesn’t cost brokers more.”