Masthaven and Värde Partners Announce Agreement for Värde to Invest £60 Million in UK Specialist Bank Masthaven

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September 27, 2018

LONDON – Masthaven, the UK specialist bank, and Värde Partners, the global alternative investment firm, today announced an agreement for Värde Partners to make a strategic £60 million equity investment in Masthaven. The investment will enable the bank to deliver against its stated ambition to become one of the leading specialist banks in UK residential and SME markets.

The £60 million equity investment from Värde Partners, along with Masthaven’s existing capital base, will enable the bank to significantly increase lending to consumers and SMEs over the next 3 to 5 years as well as provide innovative deposit solutions to Masthaven’s customers.

By serving borrowers without access to the traditional high street banking brands, Masthaven has become a force in the UK challenger banking market. Masthaven has demonstrated significant growth in its chosen market niches – namely retail savings, SME lending, short- and long-term property financing across commercial, buy-to-let and specialist residential real estate. Masthaven has also been recognised as the 2018 Most Innovative Digital Retail Bank UK by CFI.

Värde Partners, a $14 billion global alternative investment firm, has more than 20 years of experience investing in consumer and commercial credit in the specialty finance sector.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval from the Bank of England.

Andrew Bloom, Masthaven’s founder and CEO, said: “In Värde Partners we have chosen our strategic partner for the next phase of the continued journey of Masthaven bank. Our original investors remain committed to the bank – what Värde Partners brings to the table is the commitment, experience and firepower to take us to the next level.’’

“Masthaven has made tremendous strides in the past few years and, since our launch of the bank two years ago, we have successfully launched specialist residential and buy-to-let mortgages plus bolstered our savings suite by entering the SME savings market, all while growing our team to above 170 people and generating over £0.5bn of deposits. Now it’s time for us to further enhance our propositions for both our existing customers and intermediary partners as well as our future clients. Masthaven will use the investment to bring more capacity to the UK market and enable us to innovate in terms of both our savings and lending propositions.  We believe a company is only as good as the people it hires. As such, it was incredibly important for us to respect our employees’ share ownership and select a partner who has the same core values.”

Elena Lieskovska, Senior Managing Director and Head of European Specialty Finance at Värde Partners, said: “Masthaven is an exciting brand in the UK challenger bank scene and we’re thrilled about the opportunity to work together to hone the bank’s proposition and to take it to the next level. At Värde, we are active in our portfolio companies, favouring the partnership approach to creating value, and that’s exactly how we expect to work with the Masthaven team.”

Michael Baker, Managing Director Joint Ventures at The William Pears Group, Pears being an investor in Masthaven, said: “We’ve backed Masthaven Finance since 2011 together with the launch of Masthaven Bank in 2016 and are pleased to welcome Värde Partners as a new investor and look forward to them being part of the next phase in Masthaven’s journey’.

Notes to editors
Masthaven was advised by Houlihan Lokey and PJT Partners, the corporate finance firms and Linklaters and Mishcon de Reya as lawyers. Värde Partners was advised by Slaughter and May.

About Masthaven Bank Ltd
Masthaven launched as a retail bank in 2016. It offers award-winning saving and lending products. Prior to that, Masthaven Finance has provided a flexible and personalised approach to bridging loans and secured lending since 2004. Today, the bank’s knowledgeable and experienced specialists are committed to providing customers with flexible and fixed term savings accounts, bridging loans, development finance, and mortgages. In 2017 it was named Most Innovative Savings Provider in the Moneynet Personal Finance Awards; and Best Bridging Lender in the Coreco Awards. Masthaven Finance featured in 2015’s The Sunday Times’ Virgin Fast Track 100 (at number 81). The bank ranked 240 in Financial Times’ FT1000 list published in 2017. The bank is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and Prudential Regulation Authority.

About Värde Partners
Värde Partners is a $14 billion global alternative investment firm that employs a value-based approach to investing across a broad array of geographies, segments and asset types, including specialty finance, corporate credit, real estate, mortgages, energy, real assets and infrastructure. The firm sponsors and manages a family of private investment funds with a global investor base that includes foundations and endowments, pension plans, insurance companies, other institutional investors and private clients. Now in its third decade, Värde employs more than 300 people globally with regional headquarters in Minneapolis, London and Singapore.