The UK’s leading specialist property project online lending platform CrowdProperty (www.crowdproperty.com) is pleased to announce that Mark Stephens, former CEO of Allica Bank & Harrods Bank and Founding Partner and Deputy CEO at Aldermore, has joined the CrowdProperty Board as a Non-Executive Director.
With an extensive career spanning more than 40 years in the banking and finance sector, Mark also currently holds the role of Senior Independent Non-Executive Director at Distribution Finance Capital Holdings where he chairs three boards including the Risk Committee, Remuneration Committee and Nomination Committee.
From 2018 to 2020, Mark held the position of CEO at Allica Bank which aims to reinvent traditional banking for businesses through a network of Local Bankers working in their communities, underpinned by the latest online technology. His focus during this time was to build a business that could ensure small and medium businesses have access to the products and expertise they need.
Mark was previously CEO of Harrods Bank where he oversaw the bank’s strategic direction, including its 2018 sale to challenger bank Tandem. Prior to this, he spent seven years at Aldermore where, as a founding Director, Group Commercial Director and Deputy Chief Executive, he was responsible for delivering strategic business objectives and portfolio acquisitions. Mark was also integral in guiding the bank to a successful public listing on the stock market in 2015.
Michael Bristow, CEO of CrowdProperty, commented:“We’re delighted to have Mark joining the CrowdProperty team. Having doubled lending through 2020 and surpassing £100m lent, we are firmly on track to provide £400m+ of lending p.a. by 2024, with over £200m of funding applications per month and further institutional backers making up diverse sources of capital, proven to be reliable during the pandemic. We’re on a trajectory to continue growing rapidly, underpinned by a highly scalable, in-house built, proprietary technology platform, scalable capital sources and deep expertise in exactly the asset class being lent against, funding hundreds of millions each year. Property professionals come to CrowdProperty not because we’re an online lender, but because we’ve built the best property project lending business in the market which can service their needs best. We are still only at the start of fulfilling our potential against a mission of unlocking the power of SME property developers in the UK - to build more homes, increase spend in the UK economy and ever more efficiently and effectively match the supply and demand of capital for the benefit of all.
“Mark’s four decades of experience in providing financial services which empower SME businesses will be highly valuable in enhancing CrowdProperty’s current service offering and future strategy, whilst enhancing the collective expertise on our Board.”
Mark Stephens added: “CrowdProperty’s proposition tackles the fundamental issues around financing for SME residential property developers. Housebuilding output from this segment, which is a critical segment for the UK economy, has significantly declined since the Global Financial Crisis as traditional lenders have reduced their focus here for various reasons. Supporting SMEs is a subject which I have been passionate about for many years and I embrace the opportunity to continue to do so as part of the CrowdProperty Board.
"It’s an exciting time to be joining the team, given the numerous milestones and accolades achieved against a difficult economic backdrop over the last 12 months. The fundamental property expertise at the core of the business, track record and technology underpinning have enabled CrowdProperty to develop a clear and strong proposition, achieving strategic advantages in the sector and the ability to scale. I very much look forward to being part of the next stage of growth.”
Mark’s appointment follows the appointment of John Mould - former CEO of ESF Capital & ThinCats, COO at Hermes Investment Management, COO at New Star Asset Management and Executive Director at Morgan Stanley - to the CrowdProperty Board as Non-Executive Director in January 2020.