Shares in The Property Franchise Group climbed yesterday after it announced that it has launched a new financial services division.
The group said that it will pursue a ‘buy and build’ strategy to develop the new division, acquiring financial services businesses.
The new division will be a subsidiary of the group and will service the franchisees.
As part of this new strategy and to “seed” the division TPFG has acquired a 72.25% stake in Auxilium Partnership, a protection advisory business, for what it described as a “non-material” sum.
Auxilium Partnership was launched by Mark Graves in March last year with the aim of encouraging intermediaries such as mortgage brokers to develop their protection business, making it a core part of every mortgage and finance recommendation.
Graves will head up TPFG’s new division as financial services director, a non-board position.
Graves has 20 years’ experience at a senior level in the life assurance sector, with roles including managing director at Sesame Bankhall Group, head of network at Pink Network, and managing director at Linear Financial Services.
The new division is designed to enable TPFG franchisees to generate further revenue.
It is also TPFG’s intention to make financial services available as a new franchise opportunity, with the group holding the master franchise rights and delivering to its franchisees a separate financial services brand, back office systems, a supply of ‘whole of market’ mortgage products, and a compliance function.
CEO Ian Wilson said: “We are delighted to welcome Mark to the group as financial services director.
“His industry credentials are top drawer, and he has both the contacts and commercial acumen to help us identify the winners as we scale our broker network.
“With the knowledge that protection assurance sales are key in bringing about improved operating margins for brokers, we are very pleased to have a protection advisory business joining us as our first financial services acquisition.”
Yesterday, shares in TPFG rose to an all-time high of 217p before closing almost 6% up at 213p.
Rival Belvoir’s shares have also been hitting highs.
Shares in the firm, which acquired Brook Financial Services in 2017 and a Mortgage Advice Bureau business in 2018, yesterday reached a record 154p, closing at 152p.