Online mortgage marketplace HashChing is looking to further cement its position as a home loan power player, with plans to raise $6 million in order to further scale the business and implement new technology product offerings that streamline the mortgage process to settlement.
The capital raising, through mid-market deal platform Neu.Capital, marks a significant 12 months for HashChing – which has now received $5 billion in home loan applications.
“Now is the time to double down on our competitive advantage,” said HashChing CEO Mandeep Sodhi.
“This additional capital will turbocharge our growth, drive more mainstream brand awareness and provide a platform for more innovation and disruption.
“We are not only generating quality home loan leads for our partner brokers, but we are also providing them with leading edge tools to help them have a meaningful conversation with borrowers.”
HashChing is Australia’s first online marketplace where borrowers can access pre-negotiated home loan deals via verified mortgage brokers from more than 60 banks and lenders without having to shop around.
The leading fin-tech startup has been shaking up the home loans industry since it launched in August 2015.
HashChing’s platform was developed with the assistance of a $100,000 Building Partnership grant from Jobs for NSW, the private-sector led, NSW Government backed organisation that provides business support to accelerate jobs creation.
How exactly is HashChing shaking things up?
With housing affordability an increasing worry for everyday Australians, HashChing’s first-to-market online platform offers unprecedented transparency to the interest rates that are available through mortgage brokers – often much lower than what the banks offer customers directly – with potential for borrowers to save tens of thousands of dollars over the life of their mortgage.
While the big four banks are no longer offering home loan interest rates below 4.5 per cent, mortgage brokers on HashChing have secured deals from other banks and lenders at below 4 per cent.
“The smaller banks and non-lenders are becoming more aggressive with their home loan deals, and HashChing makes it easy for customers to access all of these offers from a central location.
“We’ve also witnessed an exodus of borrowers away from the big four banks. Where 55 per cent of all refinance applications last year were away from the big four banks, this number now sits at 72 per cent,” said Mr Sodhi.
HashChing is completely free to use for consumers, while brokers don’t have to pay for leads or any ongoing trail commission (a small upfront fee is payable when loans are settled).
Atul Narang, HashChing’s CIO and co-founder, said the company’s platform had evolved tremendously since it first launched to market.
“We’ve invested a lot of resources into making the online platform as intuitive as possible. Next-gen technologies like geo-targeting, artificial intelligence and predictive analytics underpin the user-friendly front-end, and we recently implemented Australia’s first biometric identity verification service, which enables brokers to satisfy the strict ‘know your client’ banking regulations via video call with their customers.
“Our focus is on providing the best possible user experience for both customers and brokers, and we have some exciting innovations in the pipeline for 2017 that will continue our mission of making the customer’s home loan journey as smooth and friction-free as possible,” he said.
What is behind HashChing’s success?
HashChing’s runaway success has been guided by some heavy-hitters on the board of directors, including Fold Legal managing director Claire Wivell Plater, former CEO of MFAA (and current COO of HashChing) Siobhan Hayden, Executive in Residence of Sapien Ventures Helen Lorigan, and founder of Sapien Ventures Victor Jiang.
Since joining HashChing full-time as Chief Operating Officer towards the end of last year, Siobhan Hayden says the company has continued to innovate and scale at a rapid pace.
“HashChing is a game-changing business that sits at the intersection of customers, brokers and lenders. It is great to be part of a team that is committed to a customer-centric business model, as well as driving true innovation within the industry.
“As a business, HashChing isn’t content with the status quo. Disruption is in our DNA, and in the relatively short time we’ve been around, HashChing has really delivered on its promise of being an authentic brand that drives some much-needed change in the home loans market.
“Our most recent partnership with CGU Insurance demonstrates the kind of forethought and out-of-the-box thinking that’s needed for a business to thrive in this highly competitive space. This is the first of many collaborations and partnerships that we’ll be doing with other like-minded verticals in the future,” she said.
Cyrus Church, Neu.Capital’s Director, said the company was excited to be managing HashChing’s capital raise.
“HashChing is a fast-growing company that is bringing innovation to a traditional space. Through the Neu.Capital platform, HashChing’s raise has drawn interest from the expected venture capital investors, but also Family Offices that normally wouldn’t have access to a high-growth early stage tech company.
“HashChing’s rapid growth combined with the pent-up demand for its product makes this an impressive investment opportunity, and investor response thus far has exceeded our expectations.”