2018 Launch & Annual Conference

FIBA launch event and inaugural conference hailed a resounding success.

The Financial Intermediary & Broker Association (FIBA) hosted its first event for members and the wider finance community on 17th January at BAFTA 195 Piccadilly.

Launched in early December 2017, FIBA aims to breathe new life into trade body representation in the financial sector, and took the opportunity of its inaugural conference to restate its mission and objectives.

Close to 200 delegates attended on the day, where they had the chance to meet Lender Partners, event sponsors, a variety of brokers and service providers, as well as the FIBA membership team.

The conference itself was presented by Chairman Adam Tyler, whose appointment was recently announced.

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Panel Discussion: Competition in the Bridging Industry

Harking back to its Association of Bridging Professionals (AOBP) roots – from which FIBA has evolved – a panel of five industry heavyweights discussed competition in the bridging finance industry, how saturated the market really is, and what the key to survival will be for both newer and established providers in 2018.

Panellists included Richard Deacon (Masthaven), D’Mitri Zaprzala (Octopus), Paresh Raja (Market Financial Solutions), Nicholas Jones (Together) and Marie Grundy (West One Loans).

"I can see [the rates] going lower. I can see a 0.2…some challenger banks going to 0.3, 0.4%. But…those will be on a low risk, residential, vanilla deal."

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Panel Discussion: What is in store for the UK Lending Market 2018?

The second panel of the day featured broader representation in terms of funders to tackle the suitably wider topic of what’s in store for UK lending in 2018.

Graham Olive (OakNorth Bank), Richard Beenstock (Ortus Secured Finance) and Damien Druce (Assetz Capital) debated the sustainability of the growing lending market and how lenders can successfully continue to increase distribution.

"We think there is a little bit of disconnection…with some very resilient regional markets"

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FIBA Executive Committee members Jordan McBriar (Adapt Finance) and Daniel Fireman (Howard Kennedy LLP) provided insight into what the Association has meant for their businesses, and what members can expect from the board in the coming months.

A networking lunch was held after the conference during which attendees had further opportunity to find out more about membership and event sponsors’ offerings.

This inaugural FIBA event was supported by Octopus Property, Market Financial Solutions, CG&Co, Masthaven, Ortus Secured Finance, BrightOffice, Together and West One Loans.

Richard Deacon, Masthaven: "I was unsure what sort of reception the new association would receive, and what difference the name change and core values would bring.

"All I can say is that I was very, VERY pleasantly surprised, getting eight new introductions in the networking session and being on a lender panel with a packed auditorium.

"A massive success to all concerned; with Mr Tyler at the helm, it is a ship that has surely a very bright future."

Phil Mabb, Bridge Development: "I was intrigued to hear about the launch having collated a few titbits of information, including the tie-up with the SimplyBiz Group and Adam Tyler's appointment. Moreover, I had no problem with paying a little to support the new regime. At the FIBA conference, it became clear that this is more than a new dawn adapting to the changing and exciting environment we work within. We cannot have enough good people championing our cause, and the heavyweights of SimplyBiz and Mr Tyler are right up there to do the same. Good luck - I am sure they will make a difference."

Graham Olive, OakNorth: "It was a pleasure to speak at the FIBA launch and meet some of its members. Financial intermediaries and brokers have helped us grow our loan book to the £1bn it is today, and will continue to play an important role as we look to grow it in the future. These are exciting times for both SME lenders and borrowers."

Phil Gray, Watts Commercial: "I was extremely proud as part of the Executive Committee to be at the highly successful launch and annual conference of FIBA. It was amazing to see the spectacular venue full of members and lenders excited and energised by the rebrand. The day itself was balanced with education, debate and networking, which meant it ticked all the boxes. As a member and part of the committee I am very excited about 2018 and beyond for FIBA."

Damien Druce, Assetz Capital: "I was delighted to be invited to participate in the inaugural FIBA conference and enjoyed doing so. FIBA has a fantastic leadership team and passionate stakeholders, as a result I see this new trade body being pivotal in setting the agenda in the Specialist Lending market for the foreseeable future."

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