There have been significant changes afoot at Aldermore following Patrick Jelly’s appointment as commercial director for asset finance in January 2017. His responsibilities range from the introducer sales teams across the broker, dealer and manufacturing sectors and include all the UK-based sales support activities.
Jelly brought with him an extensive career background in equipment finance. Initially learning the groundwork of asset finance with Lloyds Bowmaker he rapidly progressed via Royal Bank Leasing, GE Capital, AT&T/Newcourt and CIT Europe.
Notably, prior to joining Aldermore he enjoyed a 15-year term with Pitney Bowes Global Asset Finance where he held the position of group managing director. As a Pitney Bowes board member Jelly held responsibility for the company’s UK operation with revenues of $400 million and 120,000 business-to-business clients - and also its mainland European operations which consisted of a $1 billion leasing and payments portfolio.
From day one he was impressed with the Aldermore approach to new business, saying: “Given Aldermore’s huge impact on the asset finance industry it’s hard to believe that it only entered the market seven years’ ago. It has built one of the most compelling business models in the market and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to contribute to the division’s growth.”
Always an extremely active man Jelly, who reports to Carl D’Ammassa, group managing director, lost no time in getting to know the company’s extensive range of key introducers and vendor contacts. He rapidly set about reviewing his sales teams and introduced a new go-to-market strategy.
Taking the pulse of SMEs
Aldermore’s unique, and widely read, Future Attitude reports regularly take the pulse of the UK’s small to medium-sized businesses. A most recent such report, for example, discovered that over two in five (42%) of SMEs think their business’ revenues will increase over the coming 12 months, compared to 39% this time last year.
Furthermore it revealed that 75% of UK SMEs are confident that they will be able to access the funding they need to grow their business over the next 12 months – a figure compared to only 63% in Q4 2016.
Another initiative of Aldermore is its Training Academy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hcIqPvzFxh0
Jelly told Asset Finance International: “Our Training Academy is unique. With few equipment lenders providing staff training for the industry these days we developed the academy to run courses for both our new employees and for employees of our broker base – supporting the next generation of leaders in the broker community. Courses on regulation for the industry, and sales skills, which we ran early in 2017 were fully subscribed straight away - and we are planning similar courses this year.”
Jelly confirmed that, currently, the company provides finance for a wide variety of assets – some 350 different assets in total - and he envisages further growth in a wide range of soft assets in the future.
He added: “Our business has been built on the value coming from our 350 broker base which effectively is the lifeblood of our business. Last October they helped us achieve a 15% share of the Finance & Leasing Association’s total for broker-introduced new business.”
Although Aldermore’s asset finance does not make it mandatory for its supporting intermediaries to be members of the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers (NACFB) Jelly confirmed that they are reviewed regularly especially with relevance to Financial Conduct Authority compliance.
Record turnover in 2017
Some 12 months on from joining, Jelly was able to report in December 2017 that the company had achieved a record turnover of £1 billion in asset lending – a figure he aims to at least equate for 2018. He stressed that this milestone was achieved as a result of several key developments including the extension into new sectors.
In addition, a series of new senior appointments were made which served to strengthen the asset finance team. Amongst these were Rachel Lintott, who joined from Deutsche Leasing to be appointed head of internal sales & support for asset finance, and Stewart Good who joined as head of manufacturer and dealer services.
“We have around 120 vendor relationships,” Jelly stressed, “and our five-year plan is geared to expand operations in a range of sectors including materials handling and transportation.”
Another significant appointment at Aldermore has been the January 2018 appointment of Tim Bearder as head of specialist vehicle valuations – which Jelly describes as being a key role within the bank’s business finance division.
Bearder’s role will include responsibility for vehicle valuations in the newly-created specialist car team at Aldermore. He brings with him a career background with Porsche and Aston Martin and most recently was Black Book editor at cap-hpi.
Prestige and classic cars
Jelly explained that the specialist car team currently provides auto finance for high-net-worth individuals in the prestige and classic car markets. “This constitutes at present quite a significant proportion of our portfolio and one which we aim to grow – and expand upon - over coming months.”
The company’s dedicated specialist car team was formed as recently as 1 January, and is headed up by Dean Spencer who will be responsible for a team of five that will focus on relationship management and underwriting expertise.
Jelly added: “In combining the experience that Tim Bearder brings from a valuation perspective, with a dedicated sales and underwriting resource that is specifically focussed on this asset class, we believe that we are in a great position to offer our introducers a first class service and achieve our growth aspirations.”
With the advent of automotive finance into Aldermore’s portfolio Jelly is extremely bullish about the future. “We are introducing a new IT system for brokers and dealers which we are developing with our current software partner Sword Apak.”
“We have a can-do attitude to increasing our business,” he said, “and a well-positioned risk appetite.”
Few equipment lessors can match Patrick Jelly’s industry experience and breadth of knowledge. Add to that the enthusiasm he brings to the business and the future for Aldermore’s asset lending lies in very safe hands indeed.