People: Allica Bank; Bridge Help

Reena Pithwa

Leicester-based Reena Pithwa has been hired to head up the new Midlands Relationship Management division at Allica Bank, helping to launch its direct-to-SMEs banking offering.

Pithwa has more than 23 years’ experience supporting SMEs, mostly through high street bank lending.

She said: “Business owners want to speak to someone at their bank that knows their local area – someone that can provide insight tailored specifically to them. I want to be the person every ambitious Midlands SME calls when they need finance,” she says.

“Our region’s businesses are looking to recoup lost business and to stay sustainable. I am keen to speak to firms that are looking to invest in growth – such as by releasing capital in their property, or financing new assets.”

Naseer Ahmed

Chesterfield-based bridging loan provider Bridge Help has added to its growing team with the appointment of Naseer Ahmed as head of sales for London and the South East.

He boasts 10 years’ experience with major high street banks where he specialised in commercial banking before making the move to the bridging sector in 2019. He joins Bridge Help from TFG Capital Limited and, prior to that, Kuflink.

Ahmed said: “Bridge Help offers a fresh and evolving approach in a saturated market. The company puts relationship-building at the heart of the deal backed by some excellent inhouse systems.”

Chief executive Chris Sellars said: “Naseer’s appointment represents a very important milestone for the business. Our loan book is growing daily and its important to me that we have the right people, like Naseer, in place at a regional level to continue to develop solid, long-term relationships with brokers throughout the country. I am confident that Naseer will make significant inroads with brokers in London and the South East.”