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Peter Izard quits Saffron for new job

Robyn Hall

March 10, 2014

Izard, former GMAC-RFC and Portillion corporate accounts manager, joined Saffron in November 2012 and has been responsible for mortgages for the mutual’s intermediary and branch distribution channels.

Izard was unavailable for comment.

But Sarah Howe, chief marketing officer at Saffron Building Society, said: “I can confirm that Peter Izard is leaving the Saffron to pursue other career opportunities elsewhere.

“Peter has played an important role in helping to establish the Saffron Building Society in the intermediary mortgage market and I would like to thank him for his significant contribution and wish him every success for the future.”

Izard is believed to be staying in the mortgage industry although rumours are rife as to where he’ll next turn up.

He has over 20 years’ experience in the intermediary mortgage market, having spent seven years working at Intelligent Finance as a key account manager before joining GMAC-RFC in 2003 as senior key account manager.

After five years there he left GMAC-RFC in 2008 to join Checkmate – the would-be lender set up by GMAC-RFC’s former chairman and founder Stephen Knight in 2007.

That company rebranded to Portillion in 2010 yet it failed to get off the ground.

Writing in his autobiography, He came, he saw, he conquered. Then he fell over Knight says about the ill-fated would-be lender: “We established an administration set of offices and I based myself at the office of one of my business friends. There were at that time only three things getting in my way:

1. Lord Rothschild’s investment had created wiggle room, but not full undiluted capital;

2. We needed a minimum £50m AND FCA permission before launching; and

3. Although I had no prior notice, it would not be long before I fell over due to a dangerous brain cancer.

“Lord Rothschild’s help gave us time to introduce a new capital partner. One of Japan’s largest banks had expressed interest.

“After various meetings terms were agreed. We then set up a meeting with the FCA. To my great chagrin, they turned us down. We had the capital and a 12 man board (two executives: ten non-executives). But it didn’t matter. The FCA was determined to say “no”.”

Izard was one of the original architects of GMAC-RFC and its exposure to the intermediary market.

At Saffron he was originally tasked with developing the society’s mortgage strategy.

At the time of his appointment Izard said: “The current prevailing market conditions provide an ideal environment for the smaller regional building societies to thrive and provide a real alternative to borrowers excluded by the majority of lenders.”


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