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Viking Aggregation expands into residential and commercial

by Charlotte Humphrys11 minute read

The aggregator has hired two senior industry leaders to kickstart its forthcoming residential and commercial offerings.

Asset finance aggregator Viking Aggregation has said that it will be expanding its aggregation offering into commercial and residential aggregation.

Viking Aggregation, which was launched in November 2023 by Nationwise Group, has so far operated solely as an asset finance aggregator.

However, it is ramping up to launch a commercial and residential aggregation offering, hiring two senior leaders to further its aggregation strategy.

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James Angus to lead Viking Residential

James Angus – the former chief customer officer and general manager of sales APAC at Bluestone – has been appointed as general manager of Viking Residential and the chief revenue officer (CRO) of Nationwise Group (Viking Aggregation’s parent company).

Nationwise Group said that Angus’ new position involves spearheading the execution of the group’s growth strategy and focusing on identifying opportunities in the third-party distribution channel.

Angus, who began his role on 3 April, had previously worked as the general manager of sales and distribution at non-bank lender Bluestone Home Loans.

He had also worked at Macquarie Group for a period of 11 years (across various roles including co-head of personal banking intermediaries and as the business manager of global mortgages) and served as a non-executive director with aggregator Connective.

Angus said that he was excited about the opportunities at Viking Aggregation: “I love the people side of our industry, and there are no more important people than brokers.

“As I’ve watched the aggregation space evolve through significant consolidation, I’ve always thought there is a place for an aggregator who gives back to brokers and can buck the trend of having to provide a price-driven model based on the lowest common denominator.

“I am very excited about the opportunities for Viking Aggregation.”

Angus also said that Viking Aggregation would be focusing on “quality over quantity”.

He said: “This market has a place for an aggregator with asset specialisation (asset finance, commercial lending, and residential mortgage) who values quality over quantity.

“We aim to focus on quality over quantity by executing our commitment to support growth and development. We take our broking businesses seriously and have dedicated substantial resources to ensure they operate efficiently and profitably.”

Cath Ryan to lead Viking Commercial

Leading the new commercial aggregation offering at Viking is Cath Ryan, who joined the group as the general manager of Viking Commercial Aggregation on 1 May.

The new commercial general manager has worked as a regional sales executive for non-bank lender Thinktank and served as a senior business development manager (BDM) for commercial brokers for four years with St.George Bank.

Prior to her time with St.George, Ryan was a commercial broker with financial services company Investec Specialist Bank.

She now joins her husband Rob Ryan (chief operating officer and company secretary) at Nationwise Group, where she will be “focusing on a new way of looking at aggregation for commercial brokers”.

Speaking to The Adviser, Ryan said: “Our commitment to revolutionising the aggregation landscape is unwavering, with a focus on innovation and delivering resources that position brokers’ businesses for the future.

“Our vision is for an aggregation model that not only facilitates growth and prioritises quality service but also sets new industry standards, allowing brokers to thrive in a rapidly evolving market.

“Central to our vision for Viking Aggregation is a strong belief in the power of collaboration and the empowerment of brokers.

“This commitment not only signals a promising future for Viking but also invites our stakeholders to join us in redefining industry standards and cultivating sustainable growth through these shared principles.”

Speaking on the appointments, Gus Kininmont, Nationwise’s CEO, said: “Our recent leadership team appointments are a testament to our commitment to building a business with the right skills, experience, and perspectives.

“James’s exceptional ability to drive revenue growth, honed at renowned institutions like Macquarie Bank and Bluestone Home Loans, brings a unique and invaluable perspective to our team.

“Cath is a proven leader with a wealth of experience in commercial finance, a unique focus on broker development, and a solid commitment to empowering the businesses she supports.

“Thanks to James and Cath’s knowledge and experience, we are in a great position to strengthen our position in the industry, generate substantial scale and revenue development, and enhance our leadership at Viking Aggregation.”

[Related: New aggregator launches to ‘shape the future’ of asset finance]

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