If it’s not Lone Star, it’s TPG.

HW broke the story last Friday that an affiliate of Lone Star Funds had snapped up Bear Stearns’ residential origination platform — the former ECC Capital wholesale/correspondent paltform, for those of you with an industry memory — which is adding to the groups already large mortgage holdings. Lone Star alraedy owns former subprime giant Accredited Home Lenders, Inc. If I’ve learned anything from watching private equity in these past few months, it’s that when one moves, so does another. And when one firm moves, you can bet your cowboy boots that another firm will match soon enough — prior to running Housing Wire, I worked at Texas-based Sabre Holdings, Inc. (which holds Travelocity, among other businesses), and saw first hand how TPG and another firm, Silver Lake Partners, closed the deal. Case in point: news Monday morning from the BBC that TPG Partners had purchased a 20 percent stake in Bradford & Bingley Plc, a UK-based mortgage lender. The investment nets out to roughly $295 million, according to the BBC report — and it comes ahead of (what else?) a profit warning expected to be issued sometime on Monday in UK time. We’ll probably take a more in-depth look at the UK mortgage market in a future story, as what’s going on there now mirrors much of the trending we saw late last year here in the States. Stay tuned. Update: MarketWatch’s Steve Goldstein notes that the main source of Bradford & Bingley’s problems are loans tied to GMAC. It’s a smaller world than we all think, isn’t it?

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