DSG Finance Group and Magnetar sign agreement to provide up to £600m of UK auto loans through new lender Unity Auto Finance

Industry news

DSG Finance Group and Magnetar sign agreement to provide up to £600m of UK auto loans through new lender Unity Auto Finance

2nd June 2021

Press release: DSG Finance Group and Magnetar sign agreement to provide up to £600m of UK auto loans through new lender Unity Auto Finance.

  • Unity Auto Finance, a new car finance lender wholly owned by DSG Finance Group, further enhances DSG Finance’s award-winning motor finance brokerage business and value proposition for car retailers and consumers alike. 
  • Unity has secured an initial £300m new wholesale lending facility, through funding arrangements with U.S.-based alternative investment manager Magnetar and Santander. 
  • Unity brings an ethical, sustainable and forward-thinking approach to lending.

Unity Auto Finance (“Unity”), a new car finance lender and part of the DSG Finance Group (“DSG Finance”, “the Group”), signed a new funding arrangement with Chicago-area alternative investment manager Magnetar Capital to support Unity in originating and servicing up to £600m of auto loans. The agreement will enable DSG Finance to expand its award-winning motor finance brokerage business to include its own lending arm, enhancing and complementing its existing offering to car retailers and consumers. Magnetar will also acquire a minority equity stake in the Group and will play a key role in ongoing strategy and development.

With an initial £300m funding arrangement with Magnetar and Santander Corporate & Investment Banking, as senior lender, and an anticipated follow-on further £300m funding arrangement, Unity expects to become a significant presence in the UK motor finance sector. AgFe acted as financial advisor to Magnetar and the EY Financial Services Corporate Finance Team acted as financial advisor to Unity.

Unity will offer car finance products to car retailers through well-established DSG Finance Group brands which include DSG Financial Services and Connected Car Finance, and to consumers through Flow Car Finance and prestige and performance car finance specialist Magnitude Finance.

Through Unity, DSG Finance will be able to offer more consumer car finance products with increased flexibility, including both hire purchase (HP) and personal contract purchase agreements (PCP), which many other car financing providers do not have the capacity to offer.

Jenny Rothwell, COO of Unity Auto Finance:

“Unity is a new lender in the market, and we are delighted to bring all our hard work to fruition to offer a new and exciting lending platform to our car retailer customers and greater choice to consumers. Using our extensive motor finance experience and following intensive market analysis, we identified what the Group required to continue to be at the forefront of the market and built our new offering around that. With optimised financial technology and processes, as well as adopting an ethical and sustainable approach to car finance, we truly believe that Unity is an altogether different lender.”

Aaron Malins, CFO of DSG Finance Group:

“We are delighted to engage in this partnership with Magnetar and Santander, which we expect will not only see Unity become a significant player in the auto loan securitisation space, but will also enable us to realise significant benefits across the broader DSG Finance Group. We have invested in parallel with this project in Group-wide technology upgrades and in further enhancing our broking operations, and we are ready to transform and modernise the industry-standard end-to-end journey from customer experience through to a dynamic financial product offering.”

Richard Hoggart, CEO of DSG Finance Group

“With over 30 years in the motor finance market, DSG Finance has grown significantly in the last few years since our expansion capital investment from Promethean Investments. This is a highly significant step in our strategy and we are delighted that the team at Magnetar shares both our vision for the future and confidence in our business model. Unity will be a key driver in the accelerated growth of the DSG Finance Group.”

Aidan McKeown, Portfolio Manager at Magnetar Capital

“We are excited to partner with DSG Finance and Unity as they significantly expand their product offering to the UK motor finance market. DSG Finance’s long-standing experience and presence in the UK auto market, its advanced and integrated digital lending technology and its forward looking approach make it an ideal partner for Magnetar to access an attractive and diversifying asset class in prime and near prime UK consumer auto loan receivables.”   

Andrew Scourse, Managing Director, Securitisation at Santander Corporate & Investment Banking (SCIB)

“We’ve combined our finance expertise and specialist products at SCIB to support this exciting new venture for the UK auto loan sector, between DSG Finance Group and Magnetar. We very much look forward to supporting the growth and continuing development of the lending and securitisation platform at Unity.”

ABOUT UNITY AUTO FINANCE

Unity Auto Finance takes an ethical and sustainable approach to car finance by offering a transparent, fair and easy to understand service to consumers supported by the latest technology and a uniquely comprehensive range of finance products. Through our partnership with Mossy Earth, we plant a tree on behalf of every customer to capture carbon and rewild habitats.

ABOUT DSG FINANCE GROUP

DSG Group – https://dsgfinance.group – is a collective of forward-thinking brands and investments, which specialises in UK motor finance and focuses on compliant technology-driven delivery.

Our brands:

DSG Finance – https://www.dsgfs.com/

Magnitude Finance – https://www.magnitudefinance.com/

Connected Car Finance – https://connectedcarfinance.co.uk/

Leasing.cars – https://www.leasing.cars/

Igneous Asset Finance – https://igneousassetfinance.com/

Flow Car Finance – https://www.flowcarfinance.co.uk/

ABOUT MAGNETAR

Founded in 2005, Magnetar is a multi-strategy alternative investment manager with approximately $14 billion of assets under management as of March 31, 2021. Magnetar seeks to achieve stable risk-adjusted returns by opportunistically employing a wide range of alternative credit and fixed income, energy and infrastructure, and systematic investing strategies. Magnetar invests across regions and business structures, in both public and private markets, taking advantage of the deep rigour of fundamental and quantitative analysis. The firm is based in Evanston, Illinois, with additional offices in London and Houston. For more information, visit www.magnetar.com.