Recently launched online marketplace Hashching has been boosted by Chinese investment that could see the platform significantly disrupt the digital landscape for mortgage brokers.
The investment, which comes to $1 million, will be the first for Sapien Ventures, a company established last year that will invest in Fintech and online marketplaces. A $50 million investment fund has been raised by Sapien, mostly down to contributions from high-net-worth Chinese migrants.
Hashching launched in August of 2015, and offers a market for prospective home-buyers to pick and choose a mortgage broker to work with. So far, 81 mortgage brokers have signed up (paying $50 a month) to use the platform, which offers document and customer relationship management and facilities to improve customer service and shorten the application process. Once a loan is settled, Hashching takes a percentage of the broker fee.
Hashching has received no less than 991 applications for loans, with a total worth of $517 million. Thirty-seven of these have been settled, worth $19.7 million.
Victor Jiang, founder of Sapien Ventures, said, “Mortgage brokers are winning the battle over banks and we want to back the winning side. There are structural reasons mortgage brokers have the upper hand, including customer service and the ability to aggregate loan books.
“As more brokers tap into new digital models, it means they will get even more exposure at scale. Hashching creates a curation function to make the mortgage broking market more consumer friendly and more efficient.”
News of Sapien’s investment comes a week on from the announcement that Virgin Money will launch its new mortgage product to be delivered through third-party channels, complete with a ‘Find A Broker’ tool, which, similarly, is designed to match home-buyers with brokers.
Despite the burgeoning popularity of Hashching, the enterprise may have a way to go yet, with one major Melbourne-based mortgage broker firm contacted by Australian Broker
saying they had never heard of Hashching, adding, “We can say that it hasn’t affected our business.”