Morses Club expands online with acquisition

Doorstep lender Morses Club, one of the successful Yorkshire flotations of 2016, is to boost its online presence with the acquisition of Shelby Finance, which provides online instalment loans.
Morses Club successfully floated on London Stock Exchange last yearMorses Club successfully floated on London Stock Exchange last year
Morses Club successfully floated on London Stock Exchange last year

Birstall-based Morses Club said Shelby is fully authorised by the FCA to provide online instalment loans and will operate as a subsidiary of Morses Club.The firm said the acquisition will accelerate the launch of a new, branded, online instalment loan product. Morses Club said an increasing number of visitors to its website are looking for alternatives to its core home credit offering. It said the introduction of online instalment loans is the next step in the company’s strategy of developing digital products to complement its home credit offering and target a wider range of customers across the UK non-standard credit market.Paul Smith, C'‹EO of Morses Club, '‹said:'‹ '‹“The acquisition of Shelby Finance is another example of the progress we continue to make with our strategic plan of using technology to offer customers a broader range of products, supplementing our core '‹'‹home collected credit offering and ensuring customers can access credit with the flexibility they require.'‹'‹“Outside the '‹'‹'‹'‹home collected credit sector, there are '‹around'‹ '‹nine'‹ million additional customers who access the wider non-standard credit market. The introduction of our new branded online instalment loan product will enable us to offer these customers access to credit in increasingly flexible ways with all the benefits of Morses Club’s customer service ethos.'‹"The group'‹ expects the new online instalment loan product will be launched in the first half of '‹its trading year'‹.Analyst Gary Greenwood at Shore Capital said: "This acquisition serves two purposes in giving the group an online platform as well as providing it with the relevant operating license.'‹"'‹No financial information has been provided by management in respect of the transaction and so our working assumption is that both the consideration and direct financial impact are not material, with the acquisition being of more strategic importance. '‹"'‹We expect the group to take a steady and measured approach to growth in the online space, an area of the market where barriers to entry are lower than for traditional '‹'‹home collected credi'‹t'‹ and in which the remote nature of the customer relationship requires a different set of underwriting and collection skills.'‹"'‹