Snowdon is no stranger to new market entrants, having successfully launched Aldermore, Freedom Lending, Wave Lending and Verso amongst others. Indeed, that company, part of Britannia Building Society, was profitable within two years with lending peaking at £2bn in 2002.
Industry pundits have welcomed Snowdon's pending return.
Nigel Payne, industry consultant, said: “This is excellent news and can only be welcomed. I’ve known Colin for a number of years now and if anyone can get a new lender off the ground then he’s your man. The market is crying out for competition – more lenders, and knowing Colin’s background there will be a speciality here, can only help a market that has been suffering a drought for the last five or six years.”
Frank Eve, managing director of Frank Eve Consulting, added: “Well I never. It doesn’t surprise me though. The market and opportunity to create new lenders is ripe. This will create more competition, put more pressure on lenders and ultimately squeeze margins. That can only be a good thing for brokers and consumers alike.”
And Matt Smith, marketing expert and joint managing director of London-based WPB Creative, said: “We’re seeing a gear change in confidence. Currently there are over 20 applications within the FCA at the moment to launch new lenders. Without a doubt, Colin’s new venture will be a welcome part of that.”
Snowdon’s Linked-In profile currently has him listed as MD of north west-based Colin Snowdon Limited.
His profile states: “Colin has been turning shareholder aspirations into market reality for over 25 years. This experience is available to mortgage lenders on a consulting and interim basis. He has proven chief executive and director level experience of both "green field" start-ups and re-engineering of existing mortgage propositions.”
Snowdon’s core skills include “vision and strategy definition, margin resilient product development, distribution, communications, brand building, marketing, sales [and] infrastructure build”.
And it adds: “In short he could well be the person to help build or reposition your lender to prosper in today's challenging market. Consulting assignments are considered on a short or long term basis; high level strategic or hands on implementation.”
Up until July last year Snowdon was previously executive partner for mortgage strategy at Saffron Building Society, advising the executive directors on the development of Saffron's mortgage proposition.
Snowdon declined to comment.