Moneyhouse, one of the largest reverse mortgage lenders in Puerto Rico, announced Tuesday it has hired Sandy Tennekoon to lead the company’s expansion into wholesale and oversee its move into the States.
Tennekoon will serve as Senior Vice President of Moneyhouse and is first tasked with building out the company’s wholesale channel in Puerto Rico, which is scheduled to open June 1, 2012.
“It was important to find someone who could be the right fit for Money House,” said David Levis, CEO of Moneyhouse in an interview with RMD. “I don’t think there is anyone better than Sandy; she knows the Puerto Rico market and has great experience with the U.S. market as well.”
Prior to joining Moneyhouse, Tennekoon was the assistant vice president of wholesale for Urban Financial Group, where she spent more than 10 years.
Levis told RMD that the company is in the process of obtaining licenses in several states, initially in Texas, Florida, California and Illinois. But prior to launching the retail expansion into the States, Moneyhouse is focusing on wholesale in Puerto Rico and eventually stateside as well.
“Being from Puerto Rico, we have such a high expertise about the marketplace,” he said. “Wholesale was always part of our overall strategy.”
Tennekoon spent years building Urban’s business in Puerto Rico, which made her the perfect fit, Levis said. “The lenders in Puerto Rico respect her and the sky is the limit with what we can do with her experience and leadership,” he said.
As far as the U.S. expansion, the company continues to look for potential acquisitions but is willing to build organically if it’s a better fit.
“We have the key person that we were looking for to lead our expansion and we’re ecstatic that she decided to work with us,” Levis said.
To help build its presence in Puerto Rico and throughout the U.S., Moneyhouse officially launched its advertising campaign with Gilberto Santa Rosa, a Puerto Rican Salsa star this week. The campaign will start rolling out in the States next once licensing is in place.