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Mortgage Brain looks to buy after merger collapse

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Mortgage Brain chief executive Mark Lofthouse says the firm is considering other acquisitions following the collapse of its planned merger with rival TrigoldCrystal.

Last month, Mortgage Brain pulled out of the merger after the Office of Fair Trading referred the deal to the Competition Commission over concerns it could stifle competition and innovation in the sector. The deal would have been worth up to £9.9m. Lofthouse decided it was not in the best interests of the firm to go through the referral process.

He says Mortgage Brain has been talking to “a number of firms” about potential acquisitions since the deal fell through.

He says: “We have seen growth in our business natur- ally and we are looking to complement that through acquisitions.”

Lofthouse says any future deals will be with companies that are “not wildly different” from Mortgage Brain.

John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger says: “The amount of business available to sourcing systems would have fallen off a cliff in the past few years. The market leaders will be in the strongest position whereas some of the smaller ones will be struggling. I do not think it is surprising that Mortgage Brain is in talks to acquire some of these smaller players.”

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