REA Group CEO Owen Wilson has staked his company’s claim to be the biggest player in the Australian real estate marketplace, naming their newly-merged Mortgage Choice and Smartline franchises as the second-biggest franchise player in the mortgage broking space.
Mortgage Choice and Smartline are estimated to have around 900 brokers across Australia, with Mortgage Choice operating over 400 franchises, which will retain their name and branding after the merger.
They are second only to Aussie Home Loans and Lendi, who also merged this year and can boast 1,200 brokers in Australia.
Wilson told the REA Group’s AGM that the integration of Mortgage Choice, as well as the dominant position of the flagship realestate.com.au brand and the newly-acquired Simpology e-lodgements and loan application brand could see his company become the biggest player in Australian property.
READ MORE: Open Banking ‘tipping point’ for broker channel
“This acquisition not only increases our access to the $400bn home loan market, it positions REA’s combined Mortgage Choice and Smartline business as the #2 retail mortgage broking business in Australia,” said Wilson.
“Since completing the acquisition, we have made excellent progress to integrate our businesses, including the announcement that the combined businesses will operate under the Mortgage Choice brand.”
“In June, REA acquired a 34% stake in Simpology, an Australian software company providing mortgage application and e-lodgement solutions for the broking and lending industries.”
“Simpology’s technology enables direct transmission of digital mortgage applications to a broad range of banking and lending partners. This technology will also deliver significant productivity improvements to our broker network.”