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12 September 2017
Octopus Property completes £11m of loans with RHL in one month
2 deals agreed with specialist distributor RHL in August totaling £11m. Successful bridging loans completed for mixed-use property and development loan. Demonstrates OP's continued ability to provide dynamic, efficient financing for complex schemes.
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Octopus Property, the specialist finance provider, is pleased to announce that it has completed a £5.76 million bridging loan on a converted Church and nine self-contained residential units.

It represents the second loan completed with RHL in a month, with whom Octopus Property has built a strong working relationship to provide a range of financing products across both the residential and commercial sectors.  

The freehold property comprises a Grade II Listed Victorian church, converted to include 14,000 sq ft of high quality, mixed use commercial space and converted church hall providing nine self-contained one, two, three and four bed apartments.

Many lenders would have found it difficult to lend against a converted church and residential apartments, however Octopus recognised the exceptionally high quality of the conversion and the obvious ability of the developer.

Octopus Property continues to enhance its commercial lending offering available to both new and existing customers. Through its unique Lifecycle Lending proposition, Octopus now provides borrowers with a comprehensive range of financing products.

Ludo Mackenzie, Head of Commercial at Octopus Property, commented:

We are pleased to have completed two large deals with RHL during August, further strengthening our relationship with a leading distributor. As with many of the facilities that we provide, the asset represented a complex loan, which needed to be structured and delivered in a short space of time.

“As we continue to undertake our most significant product revamp focusing on our Lifecycle Lending proposition, this deal represents a prime example of our ability to deliver bespoke yet attractively priced financing to both new and established borrowers.”

Tony Hughes, Director at RHL, added:

We have a long and successful working history with Octopus Property and both the recent deals were fresh examples of their innovative, customer-focused approach. The team at Octopus has grown significantly over the last year to meet the growing market demand for its attractive range of products, but we continue to find that their standards remain of extremely high quality.” 

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07 September 2017
Octopus Property boosts commercial lending team
James Nunn and Nick Westoby appointed Fund Managers. Takes total new hires across the business since start of year to 25. Further supports Lifecycle Lending proposition, with 20 new product launches and record loan book growth in 2017.
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Octopus Property (OP) is delighted to announce the appointments of Nick Westoby and James Nunn to the role of Fund Manager within their commercial team. With a combined 26 years’ experience working in the real estate finance sector, Nick and James will be responsible for supporting the growth of OP’s commercial lending portfolio, managing both institutional and retail capital on behalf of Octopus Group.

Both qualified Chartered Surveyors, Nick joins OP from Hatfield Philips International, where he was Senior VP responsible for managing a £650 million loan book and underwriting £5.5bn of pan-European portfolios. James was previously an Associate at D2 Private, responsible for investment management and business development of a £300m pan-European property investment fund.  

These most recent senior appointments demonstrate OP’s continued growth ambition and support the company’s commitment to the commercial property sector, following the successful deployment of the company’s first institutionally raised Commercial Real Estate Debt Fund (CREDF) over the last three years.

Other significant recent hires to the OP team include Nick McAuliffe as Chief Operating Officer, Holly Harvey as Head of Marketing and Matt Foley as a Credit Manager in the Residential Development team.   

Ludo Mackenzie, Head of Commercial Property at Octopus Property, commented:

“I strongly believe in building a team which has direct experience as investors and developers, rather than pure banking.  We want people who genuinely understand real estate and as a consequence, can make more informed decisions.  In this way, we are a business that can look at every deal on its merits and empathise with our clients.”

Mario Berti, CEO of Octopus Property, added:

This is an exciting time for the company, and with the support of the wider Octopus Group, we look forward to further cementing our position as a market leader in the provision of specialist finance.”

Since launching in February 2009, OP has seen significant headcount growth and achieved impressive loan book growth, completing over £2.6 billion of lending across 2,500 loans. It lends across the commercial, residential and development markets.

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21 August 2017
New Hire for Octopus Property
Emma Ryan joins as Head of Servicing and Legal. Demonstrates firms continued growth. Bolsters launch of new range of products.
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Octopus Property (OP) is continuing its rapid expansion with the appointment of Emma Ryan to the role of Head of Servicing and Legal. Emma joins from Amicus where she spent over six years as Head of Redemptions and In-House Counseland was instrumental in growing the company from its inception.

The appointment demonstrates OP’s continued growth and supports the company’s commitment to enhancing its market leading client service offering. Emma joins a 52-strong multi award-winning business that works with brokers, property investors, developers and landlords to provide rapid and bespoke borrowing solutions.

Her arrival comes at a time of significant growth for OP and compliments a number of recent hires for the company. Significant hires include Nick McAuliffe as Chief Operating Officer, Holly Harvey as Head of Marketing and Matt Foley as Development Credit Manager in the residential development team.   

Mario Berti, CEO of Octopus Property said:

“We are absolutely delighted to welcome Emma into Octopus Property. With our continued investment in our team and our product development, this appointment could not be more timely and Emma’s extensive experience will help us to deliver even better customer service which is at the heart of our business. As part of our unique Lifecycle Lending proposition we have launched a range of new products to ensure that we offer competitively priced, flexible lending solutions to our borrowers. We will continue to grow the Octopus Property team so that our coverage, market knowledge and underwriting capacity remain first class.”

Since launching in February 2009, OP has seen significant headcount growth and achieved impressive loan book growth completing over £2.6 billion of lending across 2,500 loans. It lends across the commercial, residential and development markets.

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09 August 2017
Octopus aims to give more choice to investors with IFISA launch
Tax-efficient way to invest through one of the UK’s fastest-growing P2P platforms. A variable rate of around 4% per year, tax-free on investments of up to £20,000 (2017/18 Tax Year). No up-front fees or ongoing charges.
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In a low interest rate environment and with ongoing market volatility, UK investors may wish to look beyond traditional stocks and shares investments. To help fill this gap, Octopus Choice, the peer-to-peer (P2P) lending product that provides capital for investment in real estate loans and is distributed by Octopus Investments, announces the launch of its Innovative Finance ISA (IFISA).

The Octopus Choice ISA allows investors to target a variable interest rate of around four per cent per year, tax-free, on investments within their annual ISA allowance (currently £20,000 2017/18 Tax Year).

Investors can choose an amount from as little as £10, which will be invested by Octopus in carefully selected loans secured against property in the UK and underwritten by its award-winning lending team, Octopus Property[1]. Octopus Property has lent over £2.6 billion since its launch in 2009, with a default rate of less than 0.01 per cent. (Remember, past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results.)

Octopus also invests five per cent in each loan at first loss, meaning investors can get their initial investment back first, and receive interest due to them before Octopus earns any. Investors are not charged any up-front or ongoing fees to invest with Octopus Choice.

Commenting, Sam Handfield-Jones, Head of Octopus Choice, said:

“I believe at a time of low interest rates, rising inflation and ever-present stock market instability, an alternative tax-efficient investment solution has never been more important or valuable to investors. We are thrilled that we can now help them include Octopus Choice within their ISA planning.

“Since we launched Octopus Choice in April 2016, it has become one of the UK’s fastest-growing P2P products, having already facilitated over £130 million of lending across nearly 200 loans to date. The Octopus Choice ISA offers investors exactly the same product but within the ISA wrapper, and we expect today’s launch to bolster the impressive demand we have already witnessed for this product.”

Mario Berti, CEO Octopus Property, added:

“We continue to see robust demand from high-quality borrowers across all areas of our business and have just completed our most comprehensive product review since we launched in 2009. 

“As part of our unique Lifecycle Lending proposition we have launched a range of new products to help ensure that we offer competitively priced, flexible lending solutions to our borrowers. In order to support the demand for our widened product range we have continued to grow the Octopus Property team, thus helping to ensure that our coverage, market knowledge and underwriting capacity remains first class.  

“We believe that the fundamental shortage of housing in the UK will continue to support the UK real estate market over the long term and are confident that the Octopus Choice ISA provides an ever-widening investor group with access to this important asset class. Our track record in the market and the first loss investment made in every loan by Octopus is clear evidence of this.”

The Innovative Finance ISA was launched on 6 April 2016 as a new addition to the growing stable of ISA options. The IFISA allows savers to use some or part of their annual ISA investment allowance (currently £20,000 2017/18 tax year) to receive tax-free interest on funds lent through FCA-regulated peer-to-peer lending platforms. Octopus Choice was granted full authorisation at the beginning of the year.

Investors can split their 2017/18 £20,000 ISA allowance across multiple forms of ISA investing including but not limited to cash, stocks & shares and Innovative Finance ISA. However, the combined amount invested during the tax year must not exceed the limit.

[1] Multiple awards including Bridging Lender of the Year (Bridging & Commercial Awards 2016)


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