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(Arthur) Victor Adey

(1912-1990), Businessman

Sitter in 1 portrait

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Martin Holmes

08 February 2019, 17:11

A (Arthur) Victor Adey was born near Wolverhampton in 1912 and in 1937 he joined Mercantile Union Guarantee Corporation, a company which specialised in the provision of hire purchase for motor vehicles. He became branch manager of the Wolverhampton branch after the war, the company by that time operating as Mercantile Credit Company Ltd, a publicly quoted company. In 1949 he moved to Dublin to run the company's Irish subsidiary, Mercantile Credit Company of Ireland.
He became Managing Director of Mercantile Credit Company Limited in 1964 and some of the innovations brought in by the company in the second half of the 1960's were opportunities he recognised. These included loans for motor cars, the development of equipment leasing which the company had introduced to the UK in 1960 and the development of joint companies with motor manufacturers and others.
Of major significance during his time as Managing Director were the acquisition in 1970 of The Astley Industrial Trust, another publicly quoted company. He also steered Mercantile Credit through the secondary banking crisis of 1973 when non bank owned finance companies were unable to secure funds and were helped by the Bank of England 'lifeboat'.
In 1975 Barclays Bank, which unlike its' competitors had no finance company subsidiary, acquired the whole of the shareholding in Mercantile Credit in a takeover. Victor Adey was appointed Chairman and Managing Director, a position he held until resigning in in 1980. He remained on the Board until 1982.
He was a real heavyweight in every sense of the word and had a reputation for being the best in the business born out by him being Chairman for a number of years of the influential trade body, The Finance Houses Association (FHA).
He died in 1990.

Iain Crump

06 July 2018, 17:51

Was Managing Director of Mercantile Credit Company during the 1960's /1970's. The business had its headquarters at Elizabethan House, Great Queen Street London and incorporated Rootes Acceptances and Astley Acceptances. It was a finance company in the vehicle hire purchase, personal loans (AA Loanplan) and retail business purchase markets and ended up in 'the Lifeboat', prior to being taken over by Barclays Bank.
Daniel Meinertzhagen was another of the contemporary directors. (possibly the Chairman).

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