New Equipment Finance Comparison Site Empowers SMEs
Australia’s first asset and equipment finance comparison website has been launched. Finnovate.com.au will empower small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) with choice and trigger competition among lenders through total rate transparency, its founders say.
The web-based business finance model allows businesses to access and compare the rates and fees of nine major lenders and apply for equipment and vehicle finance leasing online.
“Unlike mortgage financing, which operates to a fairly homogenous interest rate model, it is widely acknowledged that rates offered to SMEs are far more variable and more difficult to compare on a like-for-like basis,” said Chris Beath of A Class Business Finance, the Brisbane-based asset finance group that launched the website.
“There has been a long-standing lack of legitimate competitive pressure in the SME loan segment, largely due to the fact that lenders keep their rates very close to their chests, and borrowing insight has suffered because of this,” Beath said. “Finnovate totally changes the game – until now there has been nothing like this in the business sector and for an industry like manufacturing that relies heavily on modern machinery and equipment, this is a particularly important milestone.
“We are fighting hard for Australian business by introducing greater transparency in this space, and the fact that nine of Australia’s biggest banks and financiers have come to the table and partnered with us proves that we have a product that represents the future of business finance in this country.”
Finnovate is claimed to be an independent and impartial entity and does not advise businesses on which lender to select. Beath said the website was designed to be user-friendly, offering a convenient and efficient online application process for equipment and vehicle finance transactions up to $1 million. Finnovate will personally handle transactions over $1 million.
“Each step is explained in layman’s terms and users can access a help function throughout the site,” Beath said. “The application process takes between five and 15 minutes to complete, and that’s the vast majority of the application done. The final steps are completed over the phone or in person with the chosen financier, who contacts the client directly within 24 hours.
“What we are providing is a 24/7 one-stop shop for business finance from rate comparison and application through to approval, and we believe this will be the catalyst for change in Australia’s business finance landscape.”