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Bank sells stake in brokerage, CEO resigns

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Reporter 4 minute read

An Australian bank has allegedly sold its stake in a mortgage broking business, the CEO of which has also tendered his resignation, The Adviser has learned.

According to sources, Macquarie Bank has divested from Century 21 Home Loans, its joint venture with real estate company Century 21 Australia. 

The bank had a 24 per cent share in the mortgage broking business, but reportedly agreed to sell its stake to the owner of Century 21 Australia, Charles Tarbey, before Christmas. 

It is not known how much the bank sold its share for and when contacted by The Adviser, the bank declined comment. 

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However, Mr Tarbey has confirmed that he offered to buy Macquarie's stake as part of his plans to expand the company in Australia and New Zealand.

CEO tenders resignation

As well as the withdrawal of Macquarie Bank, The Adviser has also learned that James Green, the CEO of Century 21 Home Loans has sold his 20 per cent interest in the company and tendered his resignation. 

It is expected that Mr Green – who was brought in to lead and grow the company in 2013 – will leave his role at the end of the month, at which time Peter Ellis, one of the Century 21 Home Loans franchisees, will take over as CEO.  

Speaking to The Adviser, Mr Green said that he and Macquarie Bank had been brought in four years ago to get the home loans division off the ground, and that the “mission is accomplished”. 

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Indeed, franchises of the company have been doing well; in 2016, a NSW based franchise of Century 21 Home Loans settled 1,096 home loans and had a loan book worth more than $1.2 billion, coming 16th in The Adviser’s Top 25 Brokerages 2015 ranking. It had previously been ranked 19th (in 2014) and 21st (in 2013). 

Mr Green commented: “During my four years as CEO, I am very proud of what we as a team achieved. We rose settlement volume from $242 million to $502 million per annum, loan portfolio from $650 million to $1,351 million and revenue by 113 per cent.” 

He added: “I am now enjoying this special time with the family and excited about looking at new opportunities.” 

The news comes as other property players look to break into the mortgage broking market, such as the online listings platform REA Group, which recently announced that it is working with NAB to establish a home loans product.

[Related: REA Group to roll out white-label home loans]

Bank sells stake in brokerage, CEO resigns
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