A favoured bid for Refund Home Loans under a newly-incorporated Independent Mortgage Professionals company has been revealed to be that of a franchisee group headed by Sydney-based Nico Wiering.
A serious franchisee bid was first revealed in December when Australian BrokerNews obtained a letter from the bid's representative, Double Bay-based franchisee Nico Wiering.
However, Australian BrokerNews has now learned that Independent Mortgage Professionals, one of the parties that Refund administrator SV Partners confirmed it was in negotiations with, is a business set up by Wiering and fellow franchisee Jan Gomola.
Wiering purchased his Refund franchise in August 2009 after having worked for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. ASIC documents show Wiering and Gomola incorporated the company on 27 January 2012.
Previous communication showed that Wiering's bid sought to see Refund brokers own their own trail books, decide on their own branding and set their own business models. The bid would also mean Refund brokers would no longer be required to offer commission refunds.
The news comes after SV Partners warned franchisees the impending sale to State Home Loans looked unlikely to proceed due to State Home Loans' inability to satisfy prerequisites of the purchase contract. SV Partners confirmed in the letter that it was negotiating with Independent Mortgage Professionals for a sale of the business as a going concern.
"An amended draft contract was forwarded to IMP's lawyer on Monday 5 March 2012 encapsulating the terms [under] which we understand IMP are willing to purchase the business, and we are awaiting their confirmation of whether they can proceed on the terms proposed," the administrator said.
When contacted by Australian BrokerNews, Wiering confirmed that the franchisee bid was moving forward.
"Things are still moving in the right direction, and we're hoping to confirm the bid soon," he said.
Refund sale scuttled as franchisees face the rocks