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The Credit Services Association (CSA)
Blog: Are debt buyers the new creditors?
Leigh Berkley is President of the Credit Services Association (CSA) and Director of External Affairs & Development at Arrow Global.
I recently spoke at the Debt Managers Standards Association (DEMSA) Conference to share best practice with the debt management sector on how we in the debt collection sector are improving consumer, regulator and stakeholder engagement.
A key area for us is better engagement with creditors and we hope that this year’s UK Credit & Collections Conference (UKCCC) in September 2016 will be the most collaborative yet, bringing together creditors, collectors, advisers and regulators to look at how we can improve the customer journey. We also have our next Creditors’ Forum coming up on 27 July 2016 and are now offering free Credit Services Association (CSA) membership for creditors to ensure that we keep lines of communication open with them.
One area I covered in my presentation at the DEMSA conference was the forecast for a continued increase in debt sale in 2016/17 with regulatory and capital pressure meaning more divesting of assets by the banks. In the UK, debt buyers already own more than £50bn of unsecured defaulted debt – far more than the banks themselves – and are uniquely placed to work with the debt advice sector to get the best deal for the consumer.
As the UK trade association for the debt collection and debt purchase sector, it is the CSA’s role to ensure that debt buyers uphold the highest possible industry standards and, not only share best practice with creditors, but go above and beyond to ensure they are acting as a creditor would to offer a consistent experience for the customer.
It’s more important than ever that we work together as a sector and we are working hard to open lines of communication, in particular with creditors, so we can promote a consistent approach with the consumer, whether their debt is financial services, telco, utilities, local authority or central government. We hope to see representatives from across the banking and other sectors at our Creditors’ Forum and UKCCC.