Specialist development finance lender Blend Network has opened its first Northern Irish office, and hired a property lending expert to run its regional operations.
Philip Anderson has been appointed lending manager and will lead Blend’s Northern Ireland lending operations.
Anderson has 10 years of experience in banking and finance and a deep knowledge of the Northern Irish property market. He was previously a relationship manager in the corporate banking property team at Allied Irish Bank where he focused on providing specialist development finance to residential and commercial schemes across Northern Ireland.
“We are delighted to welcome Philip to our growing lending team,” said Yann Murciano, chief executive of Blend Network.
“Philip has a breadth and depth of experience across the real estate and finance sectors, as well as extensive regional expertise, which will significantly help us scale our loan book. Philip’s appointment will allow us to expand our presence on the ground in Northern Ireland and his presence will help deploy our capital to the Northern Ireland property development market.”
Blend has been funding small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) property developers in Northern Ireland since 2018. It has decided to step up its presence in the region after witnessing strong growth in the property market over the past 12 months.
Earlier this year, Blend announced that it had secured a £120m funding line from a consortium of family offices, which it said it will use to scale its loanbook.
“I am very pleased to be joining Blend at such an exciting time,” added Anderson.
“Blend is a dynamic and forward-thinking organisation with a strong appetite to offer development finance to experienced developers.
“While there are a number of factors that continue to hinder the supply of new housing stock coming to the market, I am hopeful that by increasing the availability of development finance it will go some way to increase the supply of new homes in Northern Ireland.”