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Proplend Team Gets Another Upgrade
Every year, or so it seems, one of 4thWay's specialists conducts an interview with a new head of credit at Proplend*. The 4thWay team then throws in some additional background research. Each time, the conclusion is that the key decision maker in the lending team has been substantially upgraded.
This time, 4thWay's specialists think it's not going to be easy to upgrade again.
About Proplend's new head of credit
The new head is Tarun Patel, with 20 solid years of highly relevant experience for Proplend's kind of loans.
In his own words, he said “I have seen real-estate trends from boom to crash and back again. I've ridden the storm several times. I've met really good people, good borrowers, good companies – and some not so good.
Digging into Tarun's history, he studied economics and then went straight into finance. He learnt his trade in the real-estate team at Barclays HQ as a credit analyst. At this time, Barclays was providing a great deal of training for young graduates.
After doing this for around a decade, he moved to Fortis for a couple of years. It was here that Tarun would have experienced the global financial crisis of 2007-2008. This didn't go well for Fortis, as it ran into severe trouble. Fortis had teamed up with Royal Bank of Scotland to buy the huge Dutch bank ABN AMRO in late 2007. The cost left it too weak to deal with the mushrooming crisis.
Tarun moved to Santander with some of the others on the credit team. He stayed there in the credit department for 11 years, working on real-estate lending. He was looking after large corporate transactions before moving up from manager to senior manager. He then had his own small team with delegated authority to approve deals.
At Santander, Tarun was the head of a smaller credit committee and a member of a larger one. He also participated in the executive board's main credit committee.
In Tarun's own, ironic words: “I know a little bit about real-estate lending, I would say.”
What has Tarun changed since starting?
Each new head of credit at Proplend has always said that the existing processes are pretty good already. Especially the collateral. None of them have seen the need for major changes. This includes Tarun.
Even so, since he joined, he has moved quickly to tighten up the lending operations.
He found some parts of the existing loan assessment that needed to be expanded on and others that could be dispensed with.
Tarun introduced a fact of ownership. The person within the company who is writing the papers that lay out the key aspects of the potential loan needs to own it and articulate why they think it's a good deal.
He has changed the mindset at Proplend to probe more deeply into holding borrowers to account on their business plans, with a particular interest in whether the borrower's plans for repaying the loan are achievable and deliverable.
Read the Proplend Review.
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