Mark Picken is to join Shire Leasing as managing director, effective from Monday 8 April.

Picken, formerly sales director at ING Lease UK, will be charged with driving new business and profitability for the Tamworth-based broker and lender.

Shire Leasing is well known for impressive sales growth: the total volume of leases transacted by Shire in the year ending March 2012 was £55m (€65m), with the company projecting £65-70m for the year ahead, as well as a 25% increase in own-book funding, building on its existing £44m of receivables.

According to the National Association of Commercial Finance Brokers, business transacted by members in 2011 was only 3.5% up on the previous year – a rate far outpaced by the 27% volume increase achieved by Shire in the comparable period.

Shire chairman John Worton said he was "delighted" to be able to announce Picken’s appointment, and was anticipating further growth for the business as a result.