Leading rent protection firms Barbon Insurance Group, trading as HomeLet and Rentshield Direct, and Let Alliance have today joined forces and will now operate under the name of Barbon Holdings Limited.
The combined businesses, which will continue to trade separately under their respective brands, offer the widest portfolio of protection solutions and ancillary services to letting agents and their landlords.
The merger comes at a pivotal time within the rental sector, following the introduction of the Tenant Fees Act in June.
Martin Totty, group chief executive of Barbon Holdings Limited, said: “Bringing the two organisations together will enable an increased investment into technology and product innovation, generating incremental income or lowering operating expenses. It is a prerequisite that we will constantly look for opportunities to develop our proposition and enhance our customers’ businesses.
“Our market is changing and the needs of customers will change as a result, he said. Customers need solutions that protect, help generate income and can be embedded into their own propositions.”
Totty added: “Letting agents and their landlords are looking for peace of mind that strategic supply partners deliver quality and value, are financially resilient, well capitalised and with balance sheet strength to meet future liabilities on products and services they sell today where customers may have use of them much later.
“We also recognise that customers can no longer afford the time or resources required in conducting risk assessments and due diligence on the viability of small firms with limited solutions.
“Combining the robust and longstanding Barbon business with the creativity and breadth of product portfolio of Let Alliance - both with deep experience in regulated financial services - creates a scale provider of lettings protection solutions that has the potential to invest and innovate better than if the brands remained independent.”
Founder and chief executive of Let Alliance, Andy Halstead, said: “Letting agents are consolidating and local firms are merging in order to build scale and thrive in the future. Strategic partners and suppliers like us need to understand the needs and challenges that letting agents experience and consider how they provide support and solutions.
“The merger allows us to focus all our combined resources on further developing our proposition for customers. We are ‘fit for the future’ and have the financial strength to deliver exactly what our customers need. The world just got a whole lot better for letting agents: the next phase of our journey together will be exciting and seriously valuable for customers.
“The merger gives us access to resources that we could only dream of as an independent and it gives us the scope to carry on as Let Alliance and remain true to our values and customer commitments.”
“Barbon Holdings Limited is majority owned by The Carlyle Group, an international alternative asset investor.”
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