Thorney fund likes the look of Money3

Alex Waislitz’s private Thorney Group yesterday took half of a $30m bond issue by listed payday lender Money3.

Sharemarket watchers keen to see the next move by Alex Waislitz’s listed Thorney Opportunities fund after its investment in NBN contractor Servicestream late last year got a clue yesterday when his private Thorney Group took half of a $30 million bond issue by listed payday lender Money3.

While the $15m issue was taken by Thorney Group and associated entities, there was speculation some of it would end up in the hands of the Opportunities fund, which boasts a colourful share register of high-net-worth individuals.

Money3 managing director Rob Bryant said the issue -- conducted by Wilson HTM -- was a major step in providing the company with meaningful debt facilities to complement the equity raised over recent years. It is expected to add $6m to Money3’s pretax earnings and will be used to expand its consumer-lending business.

Last year Money3 struck a deal with Cash Store Australia’s administrator, Bentleys, to acquire the rights to 41 of Cash Store’s 60 outlets, including 30,000 customers.

The deal made Money3 the second-biggest operator in the sector behind lender and pawn-shop operator Cash Converters.