WestLB, the German investment bank, announced this week that it would move into U.K. mortgages. Heading the bank's effort on this front will be Ian Darber, a former board director of Bradford & Bingley. According to press reports, the bank expects to build a sizeable mortgage portfolio over the next few years. The banks plans to offer mortgages as well as to buy existing loans from banks through its new subsidiary, Basinghall Finance. Many of the loans will be refinanced via the securitization market. 

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