The secured lending sector is to get a new representative trade body under plans announced yesterday to wind up the Corporation of Finance Brokers (CFB) and incorporate it within the newly formed Association of Finance Brokers (AFB).
The AFB is the product of a strategic alliance between the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) and the CFB.
Under the agreement between the two bodies, AMI says CFB members will benefit from an increased profile and opportunity to influence the future of second charge lending.
The AFB will operate as a division of AIFA, and will focus on the particular needs of the secured loan intermediary, in much the same way that AMI focuses on mortgage intermediaries lobbying and representational requirements.
Chris Cummings, director general of AMI and AIFA, says a recent survey of AMI members showed the need for the new trade body. Cummings says 44% of AMI members already offer secured loan advice and that this figure is predicted to grow to 66% in the next 12 months. Around 63% of AMI members said they would look to AMI for assistance in understanding the regulation of the secured loan market while 70% of members felt the Financial Services Authority should regulate the secured loan market for loan products as well as payment protection insurance.
“Given these statistics,” says Cummings, “it is natural that AMI should extend its service to members by lobbying for their interests in the secured loan market. By working with the CFB, and setting up its successor, the AFB, we can help existing members as well as providing regulatory and trade body support for secured loan advisers too.”
A legal agreement has been signed to bring the CFB into AIFA and create a new body: the AFB. The AFB will have its own elected divisional board, made up of practitioners from the industry. As with AIFA and AMI, John Gummer will become the AFB’s Chairman and Chris Cummings will serve as director general.
The plans are subject to approval by the CFB’s members and a special resolution will be put to them at an extraordinary general meeting to be held in May.
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