Pepper Money has announced that it will soon begin commercial real estate lending, expanding on its traditional base of mortgages, car loans and personal finance.
The specialist lender announced that it is currently piloting a commercial real estate (CRE) offering and will provide more details of the new product offering through its established broker network in a formal launch in the coming weeks.
According to Pepper, the segment of the market that the CRE offering will target is growing and is estimated to be worth in excess of $11 billion a year.
The lender said that this segment is currently “underserved” by existing lenders.
Pepper, part of Pepper Group and majority owned by global private equity firm KKR, already offers commercial property finance in some of its overseas markets.
In Ireland, Pepper offers commercial property finance ranging from €250,000 (approximately $396,000) through to a maximum loan size of €9.95 million (approximately $15.76 million).
It is not yet publicly known what the loan range for the Australian CRE offering will be.
Pepper has hired St. George Bank’s head of commercial broking, Malcolm (Mal) Withers, to spearhead the strategic direction of Pepper’s new business segment.
Mr Withers has held a number of senior roles at St. George Bank over the past decade, including head of commercial broking most recently, and has also previously worked as a business development manager for BankWest’s commercial business banking division along with several other roles at Suncorp, RAMS Home Loans and Preferred Financial Solutions.
Mr Withers will start in his new role at Pepper in mid-March.
According to its website, Pepper offers flexible loan products that look at a borrower’s individual circumstances, including those who may have been turned down for a traditional bank loan.
Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the publication’s editorial direction since early 2016.