Legal & General’s fintech business has announced a £3m investment in software as a service company Smartr365.
Founded in 2016, Smartr365 is a mortgage technology platform designed to help mortgage brokers deliver a more efficient digital service to clients.
The platform aims to reduce the mortgage administration process from “weeks into hours” by speeding up the collection of client data and using a customer portal to cement adviser-customer engagement.
Legal & General’s investment in Smartr365 is intended to make data entry a “thing of the past” for intermediaries with the continued development of the service’s mortgage application programming interface LendrConnect.
LendrConnect will be available market-wide and allows brokers to submit mortgages without re-keying data and direct to lenders at the “touch of a button”.
Nick Frankland, managing director of fintech at Legal & General, said the company is a huge supporter of the adviser market and recognise they are invaluable in helping people through the home financing process.
He said: “We also recognise that they have to work very hard managing the administration when they could be using technology to free up their time and help more customers.
“Within the fintech business in Legal & General we look for opportunities to help markets on the journey from analogue to digital, especially where the customer experience can be improved as well.”
Mr Frankland will be joining the board of Smartr365 and said the service offers the perfect platform to help the entire mortgage industry.
Conor Murphy, Director at Smartr365, said the company’s objective is to support the whole mortgage advice market by leveraging the benefits of technology to drive value and efficiency, thereby allowing intermediaries to process more volume.
He said: “The Smartr365 platform takes the administrative heavy lifting away from advisers, typically condensing 10 hours of work down to just one hour, and allowing the focus to be the provision of sound advice.”
Mr Murphy said Legal & General’s decision to invest is a huge endorsement and major milestone for Smartr365.
He added: “Product development is our number one focus and having the financial and strategic backing of Legal & General as a partner is vital to help us achieve our goals in this area.”
David Hollingworth, associate director of communications at London & Country Mortgages, said there has been a shift in the mortgage market with a drive towards a smoother end-to-end journey in the broker process.
He said: "The role technology can play in advancement of the lending and broker market is its promise of greater efficiency in processing.
"Elements like the re-keying of information can be a real bugbear for most brokers, with it featuring in various processes through to making the formal application to the lender - anything that brings efficiency to this area can make a big difference to the market."
Mr Hollingworth added that a challenge faced by technology solutions in bringing efficiency across the whole market will be dealing with a huge range of lenders that often have different questions set for customers and their advisers.