Days after its acquisition by M3 was announced, Pinch Financial co-founder and CEO Andrew Wells (pictured) hailed the deal as reflective of a “tremendous fit” between the companies that promised to bring their combined digital offerings to the next level.
Speaking with Mortgage Broker News, Wells said the fintech company had seen considerable interest in its product, but had ultimately chosen to work with M3 as a result of a shared ethos and commitment to providing cutting-edge technology in the mortgage space.
“Choosing M3 was born out of a number of reasons,” he said. “From a culture standpoint, we have a tremendous fit between our engineer team and M3 Tech, and on the business side with myself and everybody [at M3].
“Culturally, it’s a great fit, and we also had the chance to evaluate the technology that M3 have in-house; what we’re both working on can create a really strong proposition in the next two to three years, in particular.”
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The mortgage originator said in a statement last week that its purchase of Pinch would help brokers get ahead of the customer journey curve – the next step in what its chief strategy officer and head of mortgage operations Dino Di Pancrazio described as its “push towards a beginning-to-end mortgage journey.”
While Wells remained tight-lipped on future enhancements that would be coming down the line from Pinch, he said that one of the company’s main priorities was bringing greater efficiency in generating new business for brokers by providing qualified applications rather than simply generating leads.
“By the time a broker receives a deal from Pinch, all of that customer’s information has not only been collected; it’s been verified, they’ve selected the mortgage product that they would like, and the underwriting standard has already been met,” he said.
“Depending on the broker’s preference, we can send that deal directly down to the lender before they’ve had a chance to review. That means by the time brokers receive that deal, it’s already come back with conditions from the underwriter.”
For Wells, the value of that approach is that it allows brokers to focus time and energy on “efficient business, as opposed to all of the business.” It’s also about refining online traffic into a consistent, manageable stream of qualified business without having to collect and verify information.
Pinch will continue to operate as an independent company within the M3 ecosystem, collaborating with M3 Ventures and that division’s president Michael Beckette. Wells said that that ability to maintain a large amount of autonomy was another essential factor behind Pinch’s decision to go with M3.
“Pinch continues to be its own corporation, and a separate corporate entity with the tech team all staying on,” he explained. “We continue to run as our own technology company, but with the resources and support of the M3 group behind us.
“That was critical – we wouldn’t have done the deal had M3 not given us the assurance that we can continue to operate as what Pinch has been these past few years.”
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M3 executives Luc Bernard and Dino Di Pancrazio told MBN last week that the deal was focused on allowing brokers to concentrate on customer service and client retention by taking much of the extraneous, time-consuming work out of their daily schedules.
Wells also emphasized the ease of use, with brokers able to avail of the technology quickly and effortlessly. “We provide a white-label solution, so brokers can enjoy all of our technology without having to do anything,” he said.
“We provide the tech right out of the box directly to their websites or to their referring partners, and can begin qualifying their deal flow for them overnight. They would need to make no changes on their side, so going digital is not some sort of scary process. Instead, it’s achieved basically by the flick of a switch through Pinch.”
Brokers should stay tuned for further updates from the company, too, with Wells mentioning some “really big” announcements set to come down the track in the coming months.