Plenti posts 140% growth, fuelled by broker channel

by Mike Wood13 Oct 2021

Personal lender Plenti has announced another record quarter of growth, posting a massive 140% year-on-year rise in originations in Q2 2021.

They saw continued growth across all verticals, despite a generalised industry slowdown in automotive lending, their biggest single lending category.

Automotive was up to $143.1 million, a 25% quarter on quarter rise and a huge 159% rise on the same period in 2020. Renewable energy lending rose even further, up 26% on Q1 2021.

“We grew at 140% on September last year, and that quarter last year was a record for us,” said CEO Daniel Foggo. “It wasn’t affected by Covid. We’re really pleased to be showing such genuine growth.”

“What was also pleasing was that it was across all three of our loan verticals: automotive, renewable energy and personal loans. Each had a record quarter and also, maybe surprisingly, all of our major states had a record quarter as well.”

“Despite being in lockdown in New South Wales and Victoria, they had record quarters, which departs with some of the trends that we’ve seen in the market. A lot of this has been around us taking market share, rather than the underlying markets growing, and we have sizeable data showing what is happening in the market overall.”

“The consumer automotive loan market declined about 10% in July and then a little bit more in the start of August, so to have grown our automotive originations 25% in the quarter is super pleasing.”

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The broker channel has been vital to the success that Plenti has enjoyed, said Foggo.

“We’ve had a skew towards the broker channel naturally,” he said. “In the last quarter of growth, it was 175% year on year in terms of purely broker-originated loans. That’s partly because a lot of growth was driven by automotive, and we mostly gain our automotive loans through brokers.”

“It’s also on the back of taking market share with brokers for personal loans. Last month was a record month for our personal loans as well.”

“As for why, if we take personal loans, we’ve seen a change in reasons. People are less inclined to go overseas and build up credit card debts and look to refinance those with a broker.”

“It’s more that they’re in front of a broker anyway and the broker is figuring out that a personal loan might suit their needs.”

“I could highlight someone looking for an automotive loan but are looking to buy a car that might not qualify for an auto loan within the warehouse structures that some of the funders have, so the broker offers them a personal loan.”

“We’re seeing a lot more personal loans for the purpose of buying a car. We’re also seeing a lot more purchases of leisure goods, people preparing for living their lives out of lockdown by buying jet skis or trailers, as well as home improvements.”

“If you think about the price of those consumer goods and the cost of home improvement, I think that’s why we’ve seen brokers having more of a role in helping people, and larger loans coming through as well.”