B&C Awards 2018: winners announced

Yesterday (7th June) saw the crowning of the 2018 Bridging & Commercial Awards winners.

The B&C 10th birthday-themed event – sponsored by Masthaven – took place at the picturesque Hurlingham Club in Fulham, where 620 guests were in attendance. 

This year, 20 winners were revealed as the bridging, commercial, development and alternative finance industries met to celebrate the success and growth of these sectors over the past 12 months. 

Together received three awards as it was announced as Regulated and Commercial Lender of the Year, while Mike Schofield was named Underwriter of the Year. 

“We’re delighted to have taken the commercial lender title for the second year in succession, as well as winning Regulated Lender of the Year and we’d like to thank everyone that supported us,” said Marc Goldberg, commercial CEO at Together. 

“We all know Mike Schofield is a tremendous underwriter and an asset to the company, but it’s great that his talents have been rewarded with the Underwriter of the Year title and he should be very proud.”

Meanwhile, Octopus Property picked up two awards – Bridging Lender of the Year and Development Lender of the Year – while also being highly commended in the Commercial Lender of the Year category and for Lender Service Excellence. 

"These awards are recognition of the hard work and success of the whole team over the past 12 months, a period which has seen Octopus Property achieve a number of milestones, including passing £3bn of lending, launching a number of new products and significantly growing the talented team," said D'mitri Zaprzala, head of sales at Octopus Property. 

Adapt Finance also picked up two awards after it was named Best Bridging Broker and Secured the Broker award for service excellence. 

“Being introduced only last year [service excellence] and winning two years concurrently, is really a massive achievement,” said Stephen Burns of Adapt Finance. 

Octane Capital won the Newcomer of the Year award and its managing director Mark Posniak said it was a major high for the lender.

“Huge thanks to all the Octane team for their efforts and to all the brokers and partners we work with who’ve made this award possible.”

Aspen Bridging secured the Specialist Product of the Year award with its 80% LTV product and Jack Coombs, director, said: “All of us at Aspen are honoured to be given this award and for the recognition of our 80% LTV product and the service that makes it happen.”

United Trust Bank was named Specialist Bank of the Year, and Harley Kagan, managing director, said: "It is a fantastic award to win and especially important as it is voted for and judged by brokers and intermediaries."

Damien Druce, director of intermediary sales at Assetz Capital, said it was delighted to have scooped the Alternative Lender of the Year award.

“Without our intermediary partners this would have not been possible, so please accept our unequivocal thanks for the support given over the course of the last five years, we look forward to building even stronger relationships in the months and years ahead.”

Crystal Specialist Finance was rewarded for its use of fintech and Jo Breeden, managing director at Crystal Specialist Finance, explained how technology would play a larger role within the specialist finance industry.

“To be recognised for the large strides we have made in delivering working solutions to brokers is fantastic.

“Of course, this represents an ongoing challenge, and we will continue to grow and adapt our offering to make our systems better and better.”

Positive Commercial Finance was named Commercial Broker of the Year and its director John Waddicker said: “We are delighted to have picked up this award, particularly given the stiff competition in the category.”

Rob Jupp, CEO at Brightstar, which was named Best Specialist Distributor, said: “One of the judges’ comments that really stood out to me was that they said we were 'a role model to what a specialist distributor could be' and this is what we strive to achieve at Brightstar – being the best in our field and setting new standards."

Alan Cleary, managing director at Precise Mortgage, who picked up the Outstanding Contribution award, added: “The bridging market does so much good for society and I am proud to be part of it.”

The winners were chosen by two judging panels, who met last month to decide who deserved the coveted titles.

Here is the full list of winners of the B&C Awards 2018:

Newcomer of the Year:

Winner: Octane Capital
Highly Commended: Aspen Bridging

Best Use of Fintech:

Winner: Crystal Specialist Finance
Highly Commended: AToM

Alternative Lender of the Year:

Winner: Assetz Capital
Highly Commended: Funding Circle 

Best Bridging Broker:

Winner: Adapt Finance
Highly Commended: Brightstar

Best Bridging Partner:

Winner: Howard Kennedy
Highly Commended: VAS

Best Commercial Broker:

Winner: Positive Commercial Finance
Highly Commended: Crystal Specialist Finance

Specialist Bank of the Year:

Winner: United Trust Bank
Highly Commended: Masthaven

Best Development Broker:

Winner: Pure Commercial Finance
Highly Commended: Sirius Property Finance

Specialist Product of the Year:

Winner: Aspen Bridging – 80% LTV
Highly Commended: Ortus Secured Finance – three-year bridge

Underwriter of the Year:

Winner: Mike Schofield – Together
Highly Commended: Sarah Jackson – Pivot 

Development Lender of the Year:

Winner: Octopus Property 
Highly Commended: Assetz Capital

Commercial Lender of the Year:

Winner: Together
Highly Commended: Octopus Property

Best Specialist Distributor:

Winner: Brightstar
Highly Commended: Crystal Specialist Finance

Lender Relationship Manager of the Year:

Winner: Christian Gugolz – mtf
Highly Commended: Richard King – Ortus Secured Finance

Regulated Lender of the Year:

Winner: Together
Highly Commended: Precise Mortgages

Service Excellence – Brokers:

Winner: Adapt Finance
Highly Commended: Brightstar

Service Excellence – Lenders:

Winner: Ortus Secured Finance
Highly Commended: Octopus Property 

Most Supportive Company:
Precise Mortgages 

Bridging Lender of the Year:

Winner: Octopus Property 
Highly Commended: Together

Outstanding Contribution Award:
Alan Cleary, managing director at Precise Mortgages 

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