Following the announcement of exclusive negotiations on 26 July this year, APRIL today announces that the purchase of 54% of Centrale de Financement’s share capital is now complete. This transaction will enable the two companies to create strong synergies within the mortgage market and its ecosystem.
Through this change in business partners, the management team behind La Centrale de Financement, Sylvain Lefevre and Philippe Girou, wished to increase its equity stake from 38% to 44% while opening up 2% of its share capital to its network. Following this transaction, APRIL now holds 54% of the share capital.
Founded in 2013 by Sylvain Lefevre and Philippe Girou with the support of Artémis, a Pinault family investment company, La Centrale de Financement has become over a few years one of the leading French mortgage brokers. Drawing on partnerships with top-tier players and a nationwide network of 162 agencies, it negotiated loans worth €3.6bn and posted sales of €26.4m in 2017.
Through this transaction, APRIL has consolidated its historical positioning on the loan insurance market while bridging the gap between loan brokerage and insurance brokerage and expanding its presence in the mortgage value chain. This acquisition is also backed by favourable market conditions for mortgage brokerage, whose market share has increased 11 percentage points in five years and represented 32% of loans contracted at end 2017 1.
Roger Mainguy, Chairman and CEO of Health & Personal Protection at APRIL, made the following comments: “Thanks to the purchase of La Centrale de Financement, APRIL will be able to offer global solutions aimed at optimising the cost of financing real estate purchases for individuals and professionals, by combining the best of mortgage and loan insurance, in France and throughout Europe.”
La Centrale de Financement will in turn be able to take advantage of APRIL’s existing positioning amongst professionals to assist the self-employed and managers of VSEs and SMEs with their financing requirements. APRIL’s foothold abroad will also offer it the opportunity to expand throughout Europe.
La Centrale de Financement chairman Sylvain Lefevre added: “We are delighted with this new capital and industrial partnership, which will enable us to join forces with a leading player in loan insurance and seize the opportunity to export our expertise and solutions abroad, thus improving the service provided to our clients.”
La Centrale de Financement will be fully consolidated. The transaction was funded with the group’s own cash.
1 Source: Roland Berger
In 2018, APRIL—the international insurance services group and leading wholesale broker in France—will be celebrating its 30th anniversary. And at 30 years young, APRIL still has many more years to offer to simplify the lives of its customers and partners—be they individuals, professionals and businesses—in the 31 countries where the group operates. On their behalf, APRIL’s 3,800 employees design, manage and distribute specialist insurance solutions (health and personal protection, mortgage, property and casualty, mobility and legal protection) as well as insurance services, capitalising on its experience to make insurance easier and more accessible to as many customers as possible. Listed on Euronext Paris (Compartment B), the group posted sales of €928.4 million in 2017.
Full regulated information is available on our website at www.april.com (Investors section).
About La Centrale de Financement
Founded by Sylvain Lefevre and Philippe Girou, two renowned professionals combining over 40 years of experience in mortgage brokerage, La Centrale de Financement has posted annual growth of 45% since its foundation in 2013. With 162 agencies and 660 employees throughout France, the network secured €3.6 billion in loans in 2017. Its primary goal is to offer a complete range of mortgage and loan insurance solutions to as many people as possible, by securing optimal financial conditions and offering customised, long-term support to its clients.
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