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Editorial - Phil Walker
How quickly Christmas and the New Year celebrations came and went and are now a distant memory, for me only notable for the credit card bills landing to prove that I really did enjoy myself..
As the dust settles on last year and we find ourselves already well on our way into 2020 it’s a good time to reflect and no more so than when we enter a new decade, the "Twenty-Twenties". I thought I’d share my personal perspective.
Well as the year started we heard much in the market that 2019 was only going to get tougher, business peaks had passed and competition was more intense. Investors had moved to new markets, big deals had come and gone, property prices would weaken and the good days were past.
However, last year was without doubt the most successful year in the history of Hipoges. More new clients, more portfolios including the largest one’s we’d ever closed in both Spain and Portugal. We opened new offices in Madrid and Oporto and expansions and relocations of others in Lisbon, Valencia and Athens. We’re now a team and family of over 600 from a company that was founded just 11 years ago and together managing well over €20b of assets, respected in the market and spoken of in the same sentences as the ‘big’ servicers.
For sure we faced challenges as we took on much more business, the new clients and stretched ourselves, in a backdrop of increased competition. However, the Hipoges team did what it does best, pulled together and met the challenges head-on and showed yet again why together we are ‘winners’.
So where does this new decade take us? Well the answer is ‘I don’t know’ as the world and our markets are so dynamic. I could map out 2 years of portfolio, client and market growth, with changes in emphasis from large corporate assets to more granular and retail and REO’s. We’ll certainly see more M&A like Alsvit in Greece, new products like our successful Corporate Services division and many innovation projects being implemented, but after that it’s much more ‘fuzzy’.
Expect to hear more about new countries, new markets, new products and new services, but in the same way that we cannot help but explore, be it on holidays ourselves, or space as a species, then Hipoges will be exploring as a company. In this fast-paced world that’s OK, we just need to be ready to change and adapt to whatever and wherever the opportunities are.
From a personal perspective this year my journey with HipoGes continues as I hand over the reins of the Spanish Operations to Jaunra, currently Director of our Corporate division and I move to become a Strategic Advisor, working with clients across many new opportunities. It makes me so happy and proud that we attract the highest calibre talent to Hipoges and so often promote internally and up to the highest levels.
Let me close by thanking all the people and teams who have worked with me and made my time in Hipoges Madrid so enjoyable and productive. We’ve laughed, cried and sometimes shouted, had highs and lows, but achieved so much. I believe many of you have improved your English and in return helped me to speak Spanish. Hopefully I can help shape the future and next stages of our adventure in some small way, but it’s really in your hands. I look forward to playing my part with excitement.
Bring on the Twenty Twenties..
Gracias a todos 😊
Phil Walker (Strategic Advisor)
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