The People Behind BLEND
BLEND is founded on the belief that development finance needs a new type of lender – one that isn't slowed down by the same barriers as traditional lenders and can genuinely put developers first. By bringing together our expertise in property, finance and technology, we have created a team that is rethinking how development finance should be done.
Yann was previously global head of base metals trading at Morgan Stanley in London. Before that, he was an FX Option Trader at ABN Amro in Chicago. He holds a BA in Mathematics & Economics, an MSc in Banking, Finance & Insurance, and an MA in International Economics & Finance. Yann has won several awards and was shortlisted as Entrepreneur of the Year at the 2021 Property Week Awards. In his free time Yann loves to play tennis and to spend time with his family – he is a father to two sets of twins!
Prior to joining Blend in 2021, Jared spent five years working for the venture capital team at LGT (€200bn+ AUM) investing in high-growth European technology businesses. He has invested in some of Europe’s fastest growing companies. Jared originally qualified as a lawyer with Allen & Overy LLP and spent time working with Goldman Sachs' investment banking and fixed income divisions. He holds two degrees, having originally graduated from Durham University.
Roxana has been with Blend since the business was launched in 2018. She previously spent a decade working in investment banking, first working within the commodities research team at Barclays and later in the commodities trading team at Morgan Stanley. She is experienced in property refurbishments and investments and runs a private family investment portfolio. Roxana holds an MSc in Financial Economics & Econometrics, a BSc in Quantitative Economics and is very proud of her Kinder toy collection.
David has over 20 years of experience in UK residential, mixed-use development and finance. David joined Blend in 2022 after spending over eight years as Managing Director and a founding member of the Development Finance team at Hampshire Trust Bank. He is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), and has more than 20 years of experience in residential, mixed-use development and finance. David started his career working in a number of property advisory roles for firms including JLL and Allsop.
David is a Lending Director who joined Blend in 2023, bringing with him over 30 years of banking experience. Out of those 30 years, 25 have been dedicated to development finance, allowing him to establish relationships with a wide and varied range of developers during his tenure at high street banks and specialist finance providers. Based in London, David's coverage extends across London, the East of England, and the South East. In his spare time, he relaxes with his wife and two children and enjoys watching rugby and some football. He also enjoys skiing when there's snow.
Chris is Blend’s lending director based in Cambridgeshire and covering our mid country lending. Chris joined Blend in 2022 and is Cambridgeshire based covering our mid-country lending operations. A seasoned property and finance expert, Chris has over 40 years of experience in banking and finance across both high street (Barclays, RBS) and specialist finance providers (Handelsbanken, Assetz). His most recent position was as relationship director at Assetz Capital where he focused on providing specialist development finance to residential and commercial schemes across the UK.
Philip joined Blend in 2022 and is based in Belfast covering our Northern Ireland lending operations. Prior to joining Blend, Philip was a relationship manager in the corporate banking property team at Allied Irish Bank and before that he spent 3 years as a consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. Philip is a member of the of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and holds a BSc in Business with Accounting from Ulster University. Philip is a keen sailor and races in Belfast Lough and Strangford Lough.
Head of Portfolio Management
Claire joined Blend in 2022 from Hampshire Trust Bank where she was Head of Portfolio Management within the development finance team for 5 years. She has over 20 years Banking experience working primarily in UK residential development finance and asset recovery both in the UK and overseas. In her spare time she enjoys spending time watching the Woman's Super League and the Lionesses.
Senior Portfolio Asset Manager
Prior to joining Blend in 2022, Chris was a senior portfolio manager in the real estate development finance team at Propfin. He is a professionally qualified credit risk manager with over 30 years of experience within the Financial Services Industry, having spent 15 years as a credit risk manager at Investec. Chris specialises in credit risk analysis and portfolio management and has significant asset recovery experience across real estate finance. During downtime Chris enjoys watching football, rugby and F1.
Portfolio Asset Manager
Duncan joined Blend in 2022 after spending the last 4 years at Secure Trust Bank where he was the Credit Operations Manager within the Real Estate Finance Team. Duncan has over 25 years experience in Banking working within the SME market gaining sector specialisms, primarily property development and Real Estate Finance within Credit Risk over the last 10 years. In his younger years previous to having children Duncan has scuba dived and swam with sharks in Thailand.
Melissa is a highly experienced operational client risk manager with an impressive track record working in the investment banking industry. Prior to joining Blend in 2022, she spent almost 8 years at Goldman Sachs in the prime brokerage operations department as a client relationship/risk manager. She started her career in London and was seconded to New York in 2010. Melissa holds an MSc in Economics & Management from Aberdeen University and is a qualified hairdresser.
Head of Compliance
Rosie is a senior compliance expert with over a decade of experience at FTSE 250 companies. Rosie has over 10 years’ experience in financial services compliance. Prior to joining Blend in 2021, she was a compliance manager at IG Group, a FTSE 250 company and global leader in online trading and investments. Prior to this she was an adjudicator at the Financial Ombudsman Service. Rosie holds a Diploma in Financial Crime Prevention, a Level 3 Certificate in Investments, and a BSc in Psychology from Brunel University.
Chairman of the Board
Cyrus Ardalan is currently Chairman of LXI REIT PLC, a FTSE 250 closed-end real estate investment company, Board member of CEPI, a Trustee of the Charities Aid Foundation Chairing its financial services subsidiary CFSL and Chairman of BLEND. He has also been Chairman of OakNorth Bank and Chairman of Citigroup Global Markets Limited and a Senior Adviser to Alvarez and Marsal.
Michael is an investor with over 30 years of experience in financial services. He managed FX derivatives portfolios for major European banks (SocGen, Commerzbank, Barclays). He co-founded SGAM Alternative Investments Hedge Funds Group, where he directly oversaw +700M€ AUM. He was also a founding partner at 360 Assets Managers. In the last ten years, he has also been working with several Fintechs as an investor, advisor or board member.
Senior Executive in the metals and mining industry with experience in investment banking and private equity. Previously Executive Head of Copper and Cobalt marketing at London-listed miner/trader Glencore. Qualified Chartered Accountant (South African Institute).