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Sesame commits to mortgage advice business

Sesame commits to mortgage advice business

Sesame Bankhall Group’s executive chairman John Cowan has committed to developing the network’s mortgage advice business.

He was speaking at Sesame Bankhall Group’s first national mortgage conference, held on Wednesday 1 July in Burton-upon-Trent.

Mr Cowan, who will be closing Sesame’s appointed rep network for wealth advisers at the end of this month, said he was focusing on developing a profitable re-structured business, which will act in the best interests of mortgage advisers and their customers.

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He said: “We have been working hard to develop a plan to build a profitable and sustainable business for the future, supporting our members to put customers at the heart of everything we do.

“Our objective in the re-structured SBG is to play to our strengths by continuing to invest in our mortgage business, while also bolstering our support for wealth advisers through Bankhall.”

Andy Briggs, Aviva’s UK and Ireland life chief executive, said: “The SBG leadership team has a clear plan and focus to build a profitable and sustainable business based on its established strengths in the mortgage intermediary market and Bankhall’s range of professional support services.

“By continuing the good work and improvements that have already taken place to put the business on a strong footing, I am confident the SBG team will develop a successful, profitable and attractive business.”

John Cupis, managing director for mortgages at SBG, said the inaugural mortgage conference was one of the ways the company would continue to support its members.

He said: “We already have a massively successful network and mortgage club, which through Sesame and PMS represents around 25 per cent of all UK intermediated mortgage lending under one roof.

“This conference is yet another example of how we continue to support adviser growth.”

Friends Life - now part of Aviva - acquired Sesame for £75m from software provider Misys in March 2007. It launched a strategic review, led by Barclays Capital, into the network in 2013.

That same year the business was fined £6m for failing to ensure the Keydata advice it gave was suitable – this amounted to £2m more than Sesame made in profit in 2012.

In April this year, Sesame announced that it would be closing its AR network for wealth advisers on 31 July.