Home loans deal brings Aussie and Lendi together

By Sarah Stowe | 18 Jan 2021 View comments

Mortgage broking chain Aussie is merging with Lendi, the online home loan platform.

Announced mid-December the proposed transaction will bring together Aussie’s brand and broker and franchisee network with Lendi’s market-leading digital technology.

The resulting business will maintain a multi-brand strategy, with a range of benefits for both customers and brokers expected from the deal.

Aussie’s parent company, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), said it will deliver a greater choice of home loan lenders, products and ways for customers to engage with their mortgage broker either in person or online.

Aussie brokers and franchisees will be able to leverage Lendi’s technology and platform, including integration with lender credit-decisioning engines and regulatory and compliance tools.

Increased investment in both brands is expected to accelerate growth.

Mid-2020 Aussie announced a bold expansion plan to recruit 200 new brokers in 2020 and increase retail stores to 300 nationally by 2023.

James Symond, chief executive officer of Aussie, said the merger is a crucial step in the evolution of the 29-year-old retail mortgage broking business.

“We are currently posting record lending volumes through our network of over 970 brokers and over 210 stores and, by underpinning Lendi’s technology across our national broker network, we will further accelerate this growth and momentum,” he said.

Lendi shareholders will hold 55 per cent of the merged business; CBA retains a 45 per cent shareholding and continues to provide funding for the Aussie Select home loan product.

David Hyman, CEO and co-founder of Lendi, described the merger as “an exceptional opportunity” that will “drive the growth and digitisation of two companies that have led disruptive change for the benefit of customers in the Australian home loan market”.

Hyman said “Lendi was born digital. Our technology, platform and people have revolutionised not only how Australians access home loans but also market transparency. The role of digital technology in strengthening customer outcomes, compliance and operational agility is only growing in importance and by coming together with a robust and trusted business like Aussie, we will be able to drive even stronger outcomes for more homeowners and brokers alike.”

ANZi (a subsidiary of ANZ) is a long-term partner and shareholder of Lendi. Subject to transaction terms and regulatory approval it is backing the merger and further investment into the new group.

Ron Spector, managing director ANZi, said “Lendi is at the forefront of the digitisation of the home loan market in Australia. We are excited by the opportunity of two great mortgage broker brands coming together to further this mission. We look forward to supporting the team in delivering this compelling customer proposition.”

Completion of the transaction  is expected by mid 2021, subject to ACCC approval and other customary conditions.