The Five Minute Interview with James Bloom, Managing Director of Development Finance, Masthaven

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James Bloom

Masthaven have been providing bridging loans and secured lending since 2004. Masthaven were the first organisation of 2016 to be granted a banking licence and launched as a bank in November 2016. They offer suite of competitive savings products, including a savings account that allows UK savers to set their own fixed term end date, to meet their savings goal.

Their London headquarters is home to their UK teams of knowledgeable and experienced specialists in saving and lending. Masthaven is committed to providing flexible solutions for saving, bridging loans and development finance as well as second charge mortgages

We speak to Managing Director of Development Finance, James Bloom:

What is the best thing about being in the development finance business?

The best thing is that in each individual case, the client and introducer is different. As a result, no two cases are exactly the same and we thrive on the constant new challenges which arise. The development sector is even more challenging, specialised and interesting – every deal requires a keen eye and attention to detail to spot things that may not be immediately apparent. I relish this challenge.

What keeps you focussed?

Working at Masthaven definitely keeps me focused; ensuring we maintain the highest levels of service and attention to detail is always front of mind.

What qualities do you look for in your employees or colleagues?

Most definitely people with drive, determination and the ability to self-motivate. I’m fortunate to work with many people who possess these qualities – they are a pleasure to work with and be around.

Are you an optimist or a pessimist?

I am an optimist. However, the most important thing in any deal is to consider the downside risk first. So does that make me a pessimist?!

What did you want to be as a child?

After the classic Arsenal player phase, I wanted to be a barrister. I always enjoy putting a case forward and quite like the sound of my own voice, so I thought this was ideal before I got into property and finance.

What will be the greatest challenge facing the development finance industry in the coming months?

Changes such as increased regulation and political uncertainty around Brexit. There is always the spectre of increased interest rates, although that seems to have been pushed out further. It is vital to prepare for cyclical events like these.

Who or what makes you laugh?

Clever humour. People like the Two Ronnies; David Jason is one of the funniest men in his Only Fools And Horses role. Sadly, many of my comic heroes are no longer with us…

Do you dread Monday mornings?

Absolutely not. Every week at Masthaven brings new challenges. It is a really exciting and dynamic place to be.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I wish I had more patience and I think most people who know me would want the same for me.

With whom would you most like to have dinner?

Either a business or sporting icon. Richard Branson or Bill Gates in the business world, or Lionel Messi in the sporting world. I massively admire people who have got to the top of their profession with sheer talent, determination and a massive effort.