The combined business aims to offer protection and ancillary services to letting agents and landlords.

Tenant referencing and specialist lettings insurance organisation Barbon Insurance Group, which trades as HomeLet and Rentshield Direct, has completed a merger with real estate consultancy Let Alliance.

The combined businesses, operating under the name of Barbon Holdings Limited, plan to offer a portfolio of protection products and ancillary services to professional letting agents and their landlords.

Future focused

The two entities, majority owned by alternative asset investor The Carlyle Group, will continue to trade separately under the respective brands.

However, the merger will enable Barbon Holdings to re-invest a greater share of its cash flow for innovation, rather that having to focus on business running costs or searching for capital by other means.

The organisation’s senior leadership structure will see Martin Totty remain as group chief executive at Barbon Holdings, while Andy Halstead will continue in his role as chief executive at Let Alliance.

As a result of the merger, Halstead will additionally take on an executive director position on the Barbon Group board, subject to regulatory approval.

Halstead said: “We have built a very special business at Let Alliance. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. Our merger with HomeLet and Rentshield is consistent with our values; it’s all about our customers.

“The merger allows us to focus all our combined resources on further developing our proposition for customers. We are fit for the future and have the financial strength to deliver exactly what our customers need.

“The merger gives us access to resources that we could only dream of as an independent and it gives us the scope to carry on as Let Alliance and remain true to our values and customer commitments.”

Ability to innovate

Totty added: “Bringing the two organisations together will enable an increased investment into technology and product innovation, generating incremental income or lowering operating expenses.

“It is a prerequisite that we will constantly look for opportunities to develop our proposition and enhance our customers’ businesses.

“Our market is changing and the needs of the customer will change as a result. Customers need solutions that protect, help generate income and can be embedded into their own propositions.

“Combining the robust and longstanding Barbon business with the creativity and breadth of product portfolio of Let Alliance, both with deep experience in regulated financial services, creates a scale provider of lettings protection solutions that has the potential to invest and innovate better than if the brands remained independent.”