Blackstone and TSSP to acquire Kensington

Kensington’s offering is to be broadened and developed with former Shawbrook chief executive Ian Henderson joining as group chief executive to lead that strategy. Keith Street will continue to head Kensington’s mortgage business.

Street, chief executive of Kensington, said: “Investec has been a supportive parent throughout the financial crisis and the recent recovery.

Kensington is a great business with a strong brand and close relationships with its customers and intermediaries. Under the ownership of Blackstone and TPG Special Situations Partners (TSSP) we have an exciting opportunity to take the business to the next stage of its development.”

Michael Muscolino, managing director of TSSP, added: “Our investment in Kensington provides a unique opportunity to acquire a portfolio of scale and a platform to originate new mortgages.

“We look forward to working with our partners, Blackstone, and this best-in-class management team to grow the existing mortgage business, as well as develop a broader, full-cycle specialty finance platform.”

David Blitzer, head of Blackstone Tactical Opportunities, said: “Kensington presents an exciting opportunity to back a high quality management team and to invest in the UK mortgage market.

“Kensington is a best-in-class specialist lender with an established track record in the UK and strong customer relationships.

“We will invest in growing the business in the mortgage space as well as extending the range of its activities in specialty finance.”

Since being established in 1994 Kensington played a leading role in the specialist residential and buy-to-let mortgage market, while the lender was listed on the London stock exchange from 2000 to 2007.

Ian Henderson, the incoming group chief executive of Kensington, said: “I am delighted to join Kensington and look forward to working with Keith Street and the management team under new ownership.

“Kensington is an outstanding business and we will use its expertise and market position to broaden our product range for new and existing customers.”

The sale is subject to customary regulatory and anti-trust approvals.