The Bank of London and The Middle East (BLME) has acquired SME asset finance provider Renaissance Asset Finance, for an undisclosed amount.
In 2014 BLME supplied a £35m credit line to Renaissance to fund its growth, complementing the bank’s focus on the UK’s mid-market.
Michael Williams, BLME chief executive, said the acquisition would be finalised in early April, and that the Renaissance acquisition met its strategy to invest in its leasing business to grow its client base.
"Renaissance is a strong cultural match for BLME and we look forward to working with a company that shares our values and customer-focused approach," said Williams.
Renaissance Asset Finance will remain a separate brand and legal entity in the market, while BLME will maintain its focus on the UK mid-market.
Fred Yue, head of leasing at BLME said: "BLME and RAF have worked together since the business launched in 2014, when BLME supported the start-up phase with a £35 million funding line. Since 2014 RAF have exceeded all their initial business objectives and have provided a tailored service to the UK SME sector. The acquisition is an attractive one for BLME.
"Our leasing business has a good level of cultural and commercial alignment with that of RAF and we really value its market leading team, led by Hugh Sigrist.
"Despite the efforts made over the last few years the UK SME sector like the mid-market, remains underfinanced. Our two businesses share the joint objective of filling this funding gap, with BLME focusing on the mid-market and Renaissance targeting the smaller ticket end. Today, we come to the market together as a highly successful asset finance business focussed on growth."
The existing Renaissance team will remain the same, with Sigrist as managing director of Renaissance Asset Finance, along with current directors and board members, Vikki Fisher, operations director, Mark Lester, credit & compliance director and David Pusinelli non-executive director.
The RAF Board will be further supplemented with several of BLME’s senior management, including Michael Williams, Jervis Rhodes, Head of Corporate Banking and Fred Yue.
Hugh Sigrist, managing director of Renaissance Asset Finance said: "From the outset, Renaissance and BLME have shared a like-minded, relationship focused, commercial and entrepreneurial approach. This acquisition gives us a good platform for future growth, with BLME’s large net asset base, diverse financing portfolio and unrivalled expertise within the UK mid-market."
More details of the acquisition are covered in the March edition of Leasing Life, due out this week online.