Marc Goldberg: The man behind the award

Marc Goldberg: The man behind the award


After spending 23 years at the heart of the industry, the winner of Bridging & Commercial’s Outstanding Contribution to Bridging Finance Award 2011 gives us an exclusive insight into his experiences...


1. How long have you been working in this industry?
I started at age 17 and with a looming 40th birthday, that makes it 23 wonderful years in the industry.

2. What are the most fundamental changes that you have seen in this industry over that time?
Three things spring to mind – the relationships between brokers and lenders, regulation and funding.  Ultimately, regulation has and always will play a big part in lending and everyone needs to be prepared for further changes. Regulation has changed how we do business - there are no two ways about it.   

3. If this economy finally recovers, and banks once again start lending, will there be a place for bridging finance?
There’s always going to be place for bridging finance.  The success of it is based on speed, flexibility and service, so I feel sure there will remain a good level of demand for this, even when the banks start lending again.

4. Whilst many bridging lenders have moved to London, you have stayed in Manchester, why is this?
We’ve always been in Manchester since we started 40 years ago and we’ve been a national lender since the very beginning.  It doesn’t matter where you do business, particularly with technological advances.   And the two-hour Virgin train journey to London also makes it easy to go and see our brokers and clients down south.

5. Can you describe the ‘finest moment’ in your career?
I think getting my Outstanding Contribution Award from Bridging and Commercial has to be up there!  Also, selling a stake of the business to Barclays Private Equity sticks in my mind.  It’s a defining moment of anyone’s career when a large organisation sees real value in the business you have worked hard to build up.

6. If you could choose an alternative career, what would it be?
I think I would have ended up in buying, selling and/or developing property, as that’s always been as an interest.

7. Who is your idol/ who do you most look up to?
Henry Moser.  He took me on at 17 and gave me an amazing opportunity.  He has survived a number of recessions and is consistently informative, always pushing and works the same hours he always has done.  He has certainly been instrumental in my life and career, and still teaches me things today.

8. What is your opinion on the large number of new bridging lenders entering the market at the moment? How will this change the way you or others do business?
Competition is fantastic.  There is no doubt that the over populated bridging finance market gives wider choice, but the sheer number of lenders is also diluting what is already a small market place and in turn, driving the rates down.  In some cases, I think people are obtaining bridging when it might not be the best option for their funding needs.  

9. What was the most difficult time in your career and how did you conquer it?
The most difficult time was during the recession in 2007. It almost felt like someone had turned the light out in any financial institution, in the property market and with our own funders.  But, at the same time, we were working with a great team in the office and the bad times made everyone understand how fragile this market can be.  Our whole business model had to be readdressed.  When I look at the market today, I think those days have made everyone stronger and more astute.

10. What’s the secret to your success? If someone wanted to follow in your footsteps, what would you advise them?
You need to be honest, hard working and have integrity. To be really successful, you should give 110 per cent into everything you do and treat the business as if it is your own.  

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