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Checkmate rebrands

Checkmate Mortgages has rebranded to Portillion and appointed Philip Dearing, former chief executive officer at Market Harborough as itssavings director.

Dearing’s appointment suggests the lender will look to retail deposits for its funding when it launches.

Portillion has yet to reveal when it plans to launch or if it has obtained its banking licence from the Financial Services Authority.

Dearing also works as a non-executive director at Mutual One and Computer Service – a subsidiary of Skipton Building Society. It is unclear whether he will remain in theses posts once the lender starts trading.

Dearing’s appointment is just one of several new recruits.

“The board, management team and governance structure that has been put in place at Portillion is as good as I have seen anywhere in the industry.”

Gerald Gregory, non-executive chairman, Portillion

Gerald Gregory, previously a director of Britannia Building Society is taking on the role of non-executive chairman, with  Ronnie Baird, previously a director of the FSA, becomes a senior non-executive director and chairman of Portillion’s audit committee.

David Hill, previously chief financial officer and chief executive officer at Stroud & Swindon Building Society, has been appointed as chief financial officer and David Kindred, previously head of decision sciences at Lloyds Banking Group is to become chief risk officer.

Stephen Knight, previously executive chairman at GMAC-RFC and Checkmate, takes on the role of chief executive officer at Portillion.

The name change is a result of the lender carrying out research in 2009 into the business to business and business to consumer sectors.

Derived from the French word “portillon”, meaning the security gate in front of a castle, the new name passed various tests of positive association and recall.

Gregory says: “The board, management team and governance structure that has been put in place at Portillion is as good as I have seen anywhere in the industry. When the time is right for us to launch, I am sure we will improve choice and benefits for customers.” 


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