Brisbane lending fintech WLTH has raised $14 million alongside acquiring home loan manager Mortgage Mart.
The funding came from Melbourne-based healthtech-focused investor Rajomon and ASX-listed PNG digital lender Kina Bank (ASX:KSL).
WLTH CEO and cofounder Brodie Haupt has put the capital to immediate use as part of his ambition to build Australia’s leading digital lender, acquiring Mortgage Mart of Australia, a mortgage manager with a loan portfolio exceeding $1 billion.
The deal expands WLTH’s loan book to more than $1.5 billion.
“Mortgage Mart’s experienced team and broker relationships present a significant opportunity to build upon their foundations. Our immediate focus will be to leverage technology to enhance the broker and customer experience in line with the strategies that have proved successful at WLTH,” Haupt said.
“Together, we aim to create a powerful force in the Australian mortgage market, providing brokers and their customers with a compelling alternative to the traditional banks. The acquisition of Mortgage Mart brings us significantly closer to achieving our goal of making homeownership more accessible and affordable for all Australians.”
The Mortgage Mart brand will continue, Haupt said, with WLTH’s experience in building digital finance tech improving the customer experience.
“By introducing innovative new products and streamlining application processes, including auto decisioning and electronic documentation, Aussies will be able to apply for Mortgage Mart loans in less than 15 minutes,” he said.
His cofounder and sibling, Drew Haupt, said the momentum of digital mortgages in the US was a robust indicator for Australia’s market trajectory:
“The banking industry globally is undergoing transformation on a scale and at a rate not seen in a generation, and the Australian market is no exception,” he said.
“As a new entrant, we are committed to solving problems the incumbents have ignored. We see an imminent shift to digital mortgages and continued broker dominance.”
The pair have also brought a strong impact focus to their success via partnerships with Parley for the Oceans and the Australia SailGP team to improve ocean health. For every mortgage settled, WLTH has committed to clean up 50m² of Australian coastline.
Brodie Haupt said the alliance with Rajomon and Kina Bank will be commercially strategic, with both partners enlisting WLTH’s core capability engine and payments platform to expand their services.
Kina Bank CEO Greg Pawson said: “We believe that the combination of WLTH’s digital capabilities and Mortgage Mart’s industry experience and broker relationships is a powerful force in the Australian mortgage market. By supporting the acquisition of Mortgage Mart, our investment in WLTH will drive numerous benefits for Kina Bank customers and stakeholders”.