Fairstone Bank and Home Trust Merge to Create Canada’s Leading Alternative Lender



Fairstone Bank of Canada (“Fairstone Bank”) and Home Trust Company (“Home Trust”) announced a definitive agreement to merge, creating a powerhouse alternative lender in Canada. The combined entity boasts a national footprint serving over 2 million customers with 250 branches coast-to-coast. 

Enhanced Financial Services for Underserved Canadians 

This strategic merger delivers a broader range of financial products, including: 

  • Residential and commercial mortgages 
  • Personal loans 
  • Credit cards 
  • Retail financing 
  • Auto financing 
  • Digital lending solutions 
  • Consumer deposits

The new entity will be a game-changer, providing much-needed competition within the Canadian financial services landscape. It aims to improve access to essential financial tools for millions of Canadians historically underserved by traditional banks. 

Strategic Leadership Emphasizes Growth and Customer Focus 

“This merger unlocks market opportunities for both entities,” said Stephen Smith, founder and CEO of Smith Financial Corporation and chair of the board for both organizations. “The strong cultural fit and complementary strengths of Fairstone Bank and Home Trust will create a leader in responsible and accessible financial solutions.” 

Scott Wood, President and CEO of Fairstone Bank, echoed this sentiment, highlighting the combined expertise that will fuel future growth: “This is a natural step in our mission to be Canada’s most accessible lending bank. Together with Home Trust, we’ll serve millions, especially those who’ve been overlooked by traditional institutions.” 

Yousry Bissada, President and CEO of Home Trust, emphasized the merger’s significance for financial inclusion: “Home Trust is a leader in mortgages with a deep commitment to our stakeholders. Merging with Fairstone Bank expands our product offerings and empowers us to help more Canadians achieve financial success.” 

Industry Experts Applaud the Merger’s Potential 

Financial experts see this merger as a positive step for financial inclusion in Canada. 

Eric Hoffman, Senior Managing Director at Centerbridge Partners, believes the new entity will offer “a comprehensive suite of products to customers with diverse financial needs.” 

Jeff Markusson, Senior Managing Director, Financial Services at Ontario Teachers’, highlighted the unmet demand for a lender focused on underserved segments, stating, “This merger will increase competition and broaden access to financial services, creating a more inclusive financial landscape.” 

Transaction Details and Next Steps 

The merger is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. Upon completion, Smith Financial Corporation will hold a majority stake in the combined entity, while Fairstone Bank’s current shareholders will retain minority ownership. 

This strategic merger positions the new entity as a dominant force in the Canadian financial services sector, dedicated to providing accessible and responsible financial solutions to all Canadians.