Thursday, September 18, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

How Vernon Hill raised another $200M for Metro Bank (UK)

Cohen, Moore, Fidelity, Wellington, the Reubens, LeFrak

How Vernon Hill raised another $200M for Metro Bank (UK)

Metro Bank has raised another $200 million, doubling its 2010 capitalization, says founder Vernon Hill, late of the former Commerce Bancorp of Marlton (now part of TD Bank).

Where'd he get the money? Reports Britain's City AM:  

"Upstart lender Metro Bank," opened last year by former Commerce Bank boss Vernon Hill, "wants to open seven new branches by the end of this year after completing a £126m capital raising." Ceo Craig Donaldson confirmed Metro is still planning a public stock offering in 2014.

"Hedge fund Moore Capital and billionaire investor Steve Cohen are believed to have taken stakes in Metro in the recent fundraising, which has seen co-founder Vernon Hill cut his stake of around a fifth.

"In total the bank raised £126m from new investors and existing backers, which include asset managers Fidelity and Wellington Capital, property entrepreneurs the Reuben brothers and New York property developer Richard LeFrak."

12 current branches, with 10 additional locations to be added over the next year. Metro projects a total of 200 in Greater London by 2020. Though UK lending is slow, the bank claims 80,000 accounts and expects to employ 700 by year's end. Marks & Spencer, the British department store, and other UK companies are planning their own consumer banks to challenge Britain's stodgy Big Five lenders. 

Joseph N. DiStefano
About this blog

PhillyDeals posts raw drafts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area finance, investment, commercial real estate, tech, hiring and public spending, which he's been writing since 1989, mostly for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn, taught writing at St. Joe's, and has written the book Comcasted, more than a thousand columns, and thousands of articles, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

Joseph N. DiStefano
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