Other high-profile bankers who have joined Finspo include Josh Broham, director of products who created the mortgage pricing engine at NAB as head of mortgage pricing and, Mr. Gilfillan said, also worked for ANZ.
Bill Armor, Finspo Chief Experience Officer, was the General Manager of Strategic Development at NAB, maintained relationships with Visa and realestate.com.au, and before that he also worked at ANZ. Brad Gravell, COO, was the general manager of ANZ for home loans and was previously the general manager of consumer finance at NAB.
These aren’t the only NAB executives to leave the ship to create mortgage-focused fintech: Nathan Walsh and Michael Starkey left NAB to form of Athena Home Loans in 2017 and it is growing rapidly…
The creation of Finspo comes amid the digital transformation of the mortgage brokerage industry, which is now legally obligated to act in the best interests of clients after being disclosed by the Royal Commission.
Major national mortgage brokers Aussie Home Loans and AFG announced a financial technology partnership this year: Aussie Home Loans launched Aussie Online in April using Tic: Toc execution technology; until AFG merges with Volt Bank in June to launch a personal finance application that will allow brokers to get closer to clients after loans are issued. Other digital brokers include Lendi and Uno, both owned by Westpac.
Finspo began raising capital last November with a $ 2.7 million Series A round, supported by board members Mark Armor, director of UniSuper, and Ashok Ramamurthy, former CFO of consumer bank at ANZ and then CEO of AmBank in Malaysia. These directors were leading the last fundraiser.
Mr Gilfillan was the second NAB witness at the Royal Commission in March 2018, where he a question about the use of the NAB Household Expenditure Indicator or the HEM Benchmark… Now he says he “loves to be on the other side and helps clients save [money]”.
“For a while, I had the desire to do something fiercely consumer-oriented, and as a bank executive, even before the Royal Commission, that was not always a role for me. Royal Commission and all the attention didn’t give me much reason to stay [at NAB],” he said.
While Finspo’s technology could provide customers with the ability to switch lenders offering lower rates, he said the broker would not be dependent on customer churn, which could generate more commission income, and would soon launch features to help customers renegotiate negotiations with existing banks in order to they don’t need to switch.
Finspo is just getting started: it raised its first loan in January and plans to place $ 20 million in loans in August, up from $ 10 million in June. Its app is also available to non-mortgage clients and is currently used by about 1,000 people.
Mr Gilfillan said the average Australian spends $ 9,500 a year on bank fees and interest and can save $ 4,500 through simple measures such as reducing credit card balances, using offset accounts and demanding the best rates on the market.