TLT has advised Starling Bank on its £50 million acquisition of specialist buy-to-let mortgage lender Fleet Mortgages. 

Fleet Mortgages focuses on providing mortgages to professional and semi-professional buy-to-let landlords and, to date, has originated £2.3 billion of mortgages and experienced zero credit losses. It currently has circa-£1.75 billion of mortgages under management.

Starling will become the sole funder of future originations, with Fleet Mortgages able to build on its successful lending operation by accessing Starling’s growing deposit base.

The acquisition is part of a wider plan at the bank to expand lending through a mix of strategic forward-flow arrangements, organic lending and targeted M&A activity.

TLT led on all legal aspects of the acquisition, which included the negotiation of the overall transaction terms and working closely alongside Starling and its other advisors to ensure that the bank’s key objectives were achieved.

The TLT team was led by corporate partner Alice Gardner, who drew upon expertise from across the firm’s disciplines to complete the transaction. The team included partners Rich Hughes and Peter Carney and legal directors Tom Ward and Catharine McDonald (banking), associate Luke Thorngate-Davies and solicitor Amy Tough (corporate), partner Esther Smith (employment), partner Robin Penfold (financial services regulation) and partner Mark Braude (tax).

Alice Gardner, partner at TLT, says:

“We are delighted to support Starling with its first corporate acquisition, which will form an integral part of its wider growth plans. The continued boost seen in the housing market during the pandemic and Starling’s acquisition of Fleet Mortgages will allow the bank to build on its forward-flow arrangements as the market continues to thrive.

“This acquisition is a great example of how clients can really benefit from strategic M&A activity as they strive to develop and grow new areas of business."

Date published

27 July 2021

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