Richard Klemmer, partner at Oakwood Global Finance

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Richard Klemmer, partner at Oakwood Global Finance

In the spotlight

myintroducer caught up with Richard Klemmer, a partner at Oakwood Finance.

myi: What is Oakwood’s particular area of expertise?

We specialise in credit and asset management. We have developed from a very solid base of a high quality, IT driven business process outsourcing service, and layered in many years of expertise in managing credit positions and maximising portfolio performance and asset recovery, to evolve into the business that we are today.

We believe that our offering to clients is uniquely “cradle-to-grave”. We can handle every aspect of portfolio management including holding legal title, deploying a case management operating model and leveraging off the most sophisticated – and proprietary – servicing system in the UK.

myi: How has your business changed in the last five years?

Five years ago we were originating assets ourselves, and the subsequent servicing and asset management was in support of our own in-house lending activities. Today we are a true specialist third party service provider, offering our expertise and infrastructure to a wide range of investor and bank clients.

myi: What do you see as the big areas of opportunity for the future?

Our main opportunities for growth will come both from expanding into other asset classes (such as our recent moves into second charge loans and commercial mortgages), and new jurisdictions. These are most likely to be countries where the Eurozone crisis has seen mortgage books being traded and investors require a compliant service as well as a return on loans that are often non-performing.

myi: What single piece of advice would you share with lenders today?

I would actually venture two! Firstly, control your credit risk. Don’t delegate key components of your firm’s credit risk to the distribution channel. Secondly, make sure your funding model is robust and liquid: the lenders that suffered the worst during the credit crunch were those with an over reliance on wholesale funding lines that evaporated overnight.

myi: What is your biggest point of pride and biggest regret in business? 

We are very proud of the fact that we managed to steer our independent financial services business through the worst financial sector crisis since the Great Depression and have emerged as one of the fastest growing servicers in the UK.

As for regrets: only that I didn’t invent Facebook!
 
myi: Do you have any predictions for the next 12 months?

I think 2013 in broad terms, for our industry, will be similar to this year; we expect to see continuing low interest rates, which means that mortgage affordability will continue at current levels and therefore repossession activity will remain low, because interest rate shock will be deferred.

There will be plenty of activity (and costs) as a result of the Mortgage Market Review, but new lending is likely to remain suppressed, thanks to a toxic combination of low overall demand, restrictive lending criteria, lack of substantial deposits, uncertainty on house price values and latent negative equity for many second time buyers.

In our specific niche of portfolio trading, we expect demand to again exceed supply, so we anticipate modest activity in that space.

myi: What would you be doing if you weren’t in the financial services industry?

Had talent not been so sadly lacking then ideally I would be swinging  golf clubs for a living; however, like many of us, I had to face up to reality and settle for a life in FS!

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Latest Comments

I have never believed in coincidences, and neither do the banks and intermediaries that are reinventing themselves to ensure they remain at the centre of customer expectations and decision making.

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becky scanlon
becky scanlon 03 Aug 2015

Service is so often overlooked from a business development point of view, there is always a tenancy to focus on strategy for continued growth and business development. We have tried to remember to put

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Good advice makes a huge difference to people when they are navigating their choices on savings and retirement, but the rules today have not kept pace with people's needs.

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There are a number of significant changes that have far reaching consequences and see the most radical change to insurance law for more than 100 years.

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The mortgage market got its skates on in June, playing catch-up after May's stumble in lending.

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The market is likely to become increasingly competitive in future months, as low inflation, low rates and rising wages will act as a catalyst for demand.

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The opening of the demand flood-gates is likely to drive house price inflation to new highs in the future unless more houses are built to bring balance to the market.

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magnus duke dadzie
magnus duke dadzie 22 Jul 2015

Well done to Chris and the team...Keep on tracking

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Graham
Graham 21 Jul 2015

Excellent products but 'Market leading service' - who on earth are they trying to kid? They have been the single worst mortgage company for service for years. If they can keep spouting such rubbish as

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Younger people looking to get a foot on the ladder are facing fierce competition and this, along with the lack of supply, is driving up prices at a faster rate when compared to larger properties.

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Melanie Prendivillle
Melanie Prendivillle 18 Jul 2015

Martin Wheatley is the best man for the Job. What a shame that George Osborne doesn't think so. He was the only one who knew what was going on and stopped the banks from running riot. The consumers were...

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lotuscat
lotuscat 17 Jul 2015

Should have departed long ago, seems to have lacked judgement and presided over several disasters

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