Bouris looks to delist Yellow Brick Road from ASX amid a challenging few years

Bouris looks to delist Yellow Brick Road from ASX amid a challenging few years

Yellow Brick Road founder and executive chairman Mark Bouris

Yellow Brick Road Holdings (ASX: YBR), the mortgage broker founded by Mark Bouris in 2007, looks set to end 15 years as a listed company after facing challenges to profitability over the past couple of years.

Shares in Yellow Brick Road were placed in a trading halt yesterday pending an announcement expected by the company on Monday.

“The trading halt is requested pending an announcement by YBR in relation to an application to be removed from the official list of ASX,” says the company.

Yellow Brick Road was founded by Bouris just three years after he sold non-bank lender Wizard Home Loans to GE Money for $500 million in 2004.

The company has had a chequered performance since then, which is reflected in the shares which have never traded above the $1 issue price since listing.

They last traded at 5.5¢ ahead of yesterday’s trading halt.

Bouris, the executive chairman of Yellow Brick Road, has been under pressure to turn around the performance of the company which has posted an annual loss every year since 2021, culminating in a blowout to a $3.5 million loss in FY23.

Yellow Brick Road has blamed a fall in home loan settlements, ‘intense’ competition in mortgage pricing and cash-back offers and a shift to major banks away from non-banks lenders for its latest profit performance.

The proposal to delist the company comes five years after Yellow Brick Road rejected a 9c-a-share takeover offer from Mercantile Investment Company, controlled by the now disgraced New Zealand corporate raider Ron Brierley.

In 2019, Yellow Brick Road sold 12.3 per cent of the company to US alternative asset manager Magnetar for 6¢ a share, which led to a joint-venture partnership to create a mortgage-backed securities securitisation business, Resi Wholesale Funding.

The move led the company to rebrand as Yellow Brick Road Home Loans as the company firmed its position as a non-bank lender and mortgage service provider.

Over the past three years, Yellow Brick Road has moved to simplify the business, reduce costs and implement new data and technology initiatives, including the launch of the Resi Assessment Platform this year.

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