C2 buys Zodiac

The move signals c2’s launch of its secured lending operation to the intermediary market and follows the recent launch of secured loan offerings from several mortgage packagers. c2 financial has revealed that the new operation is to be called c2 secured lending and will run alongside the current brands.

Commenting on the acquisition, David Wylie Managing Director of c2, said: “We have been in negotiation with the partners of Zodiac since the summer of 2004 and due diligence was completed in Q4, we have since then been running a pilot operation in partnership with Zodiac to confirm that this was indeed the right company to acquire. The pilot was very successful indeed, so we are now pleased to confirm the transaction.”

Justin Caffrey, Operations Director at c2, added: “It has been our intention to diversify into this area for some 18 months now but, for us, it was necessary to ensure that the offering was market leading and comprehensive from the outset. By acquiring an established business with an industry track record, c2 can immediately offer the specialist knowledge necessary to process and complete secured loans, which is a significantly different process from that required for mortgages.”

Zodiac was formed by three partners in 2003, two of whom had previously worked for over seven years within the secured loan division of The Woolwich. The company now has 10 lenders on its panel and a projected turnover of £1.68m for 2005.

Senior partner at Zodiac, Roger Taylor commented: “ We are delighted now that this acquisition has been completed and we are thrilled to be on board with c2 financial, the quality of their organisation and the resources available will ensure that c2 secured lending will develop into one of the UK’s largest secured loan brokerages.”

His colleague Sharon Jones added “The initial sales enquiries will be handled by the Broker Desk at c2-financial’s offices in Fareham, once the enquiry is complete, all matters relating to the processing and dealing with the client or intermediary will then be transferred over to our office in Hertfordshire. With the investment that the directors of c2-financial have made in technology and the infrastructure already in place, this will be a seamless transaction.”