Chief executive Nigel Wilson reports growing demand for private placements

Legal & General is planning to lend money to medium-sized companies that want to reduce their dependence on bank borrowing.

L&G would lend sums as low as £20m for up to 10 years as “private placements”, chief executive Nigel Wilson told the Financial Times.

“We will step up and take over some of the roles that the banks have fulfilled over the past 20 years,” he said.

L&G is planning to launch its lending operation by the end of the year.

M&G, the investment managing arm of Prudential, has already invested £2bn in private placements.