"Smartbank" processes its first mortgage

by Madison Utley19 Jul 2019

A "smartbank" that was granted its full banking licence from APRA just yesterday has shared that another milestone also occurred this week.

86 400 CEO Robert Bell told Australian Broker that the bank just processed its first staff mortgage and is just two or three months away from the official launch of its home loan products, which will be exclusively distributed through the broker channel.

“The market might be a bit tougher, but in this type of market mortgage brokers play an even bigger role than they have in the past in helping Australians with what is one of the biggest financial decisions they will make,” said Bell.

The bank has already joined the panel of lenders at both Vow Financial and Specialist Finance Group (SFG), and is hoping to partner with additional aggregators in the future.

“The focus has been on doing something really different in the broker space that’s just not there at the moment,” lead developer for 86 400’s home loan proposition, Melissa Christy, told Australian Broker earlier this year.

Bell also explained that the term "smartbank" originated as 86 400 was designed to deliver banking through a smartphone.

“Neobank means ‘new bank,’ and we wanted to be more than just a new bank. We’ve done an enormous amount of research to understand consumers and how they bank today and what we found is that Australians find banking very difficult and very stressful,” he said.

“When we designed 86 400, we always kept that as the problem that we needed to solve. We thought the solution was using smart technology. We thought the right place to do it would be on a smart phone where nine million Australians are already ruining their lives through a smartphone,” Bell added.

The 86 400 app was originally launched to a select group of beta users six months ago. Since then, it has been updated 26 times, refined and ready to be taken public once the licence was granted.

It will take a few weeks for the app to go live on both the App Store and Google Play, but as soon as it does customers on the 86 400 waitlist will be able to begin banking on the platform immediately.

The waitlist will remain open for the next few weeks, with the bank encouraging anyone interested to hop on board.