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E Loan's snail worked, but it was too slow

Tech wreck hits E-Loan

Wednesday, January 17th 2001, 5:14PM

by Philip Macalister

The Warehouse has taken over running mortgage comparison website E-Loan because the business was not sufficiently profitable.

Under the deal, which was announced just before Christmas, E-Loan has been split into two units. One, the B2C side of the business, is now jointly owned by The Warehouse and listed company eVentures. The business has been relocated to the Warehouse's head office on the North Shore and the Big Red shed has taken over management responsibility.

EVentures, which set up E-Loan in New Zealand, will concentrate on selling the comparative software tool which is the core component of E-Loan in the Asia Pacific region.

E-Loan chief executive Bruce Gordon says the changes have been made because the B2C e-commerce model many businesses were using wasn't working.

That model relied on stand alone e commerce businesses building brand profile, and hoping the large number of site visitors would turn into profitable customers in the future.

"It's fair to say that the entire world has changed its point of view on what is a sustainable model for marketing a B2C business.

"Investors have cooled to that model," he says.

Gordon says the high profile branding campaign was successful: "The snail worked for us."

On the financial side E-Loan's supply of cash had dried up, the cost of customer acquisition was too high, and the business wasn't profitable quick enough.

Originally E-Loan Inc in the US was to provide 50% of the cash for the business. However, that source dried up after the tech sector fell out of favour with investors last year.

Neither, Mitchener, Gordon, nor Warehouse chief operating officer Greg Muir will say what the Warehouse paid for E-Loan, or if it parted with any cash.

E Ventures chief executive Cindy Mitchener says part of the problem with the B2C set up is that "the cost of customer acquisition was too high", so it became necessary to explore other options.

E Ventures went to the Warehouse (which had a minority stake in the listed company) because E-Loan "was not sufficiently profitable quick enough as a stand-alone business."

Gordon and Mitchener say that although the model wasn't working, E-Loan, on a relative basis globally, was successful.

Neither will say how many loan deals were closed. However, the number appears to be small.

Mitchener says the application to closure rate was 22%, compared to 18% in the US.

Gordon says E-Loan has processed about 200 credit card applications since the service was launched in November.

What happens in the future is still unknown. Muir says the company will unveil its financial service plans in about two month's time.

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Mortgage Rates Table

Full Rates Table | Compare Rates

Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
AIA - Back My Build 6.19 - - -
AIA - Go Home Loans 8.74 7.45 7.05 6.85
ANZ 8.64 7.99 7.49 7.35
ANZ Blueprint to Build 7.39 - - -
ANZ Good Energy - - - 1.00
ANZ Special - 7.39 6.89 6.75
ASB Bank 8.64 7.39 6.89 6.65
ASB Better Homes Top Up - - - 1.00
Avanti Finance 9.15 - - -
Basecorp Finance 9.60 - - -
Bluestone 9.24 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
BNZ - Classic - 7.35 6.89 6.79
BNZ - Green Home Loan top-ups - - - 1.00
BNZ - Mortgage One 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 8.69 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 8.69 7.95 7.65 7.45
BNZ - TotalMoney 8.69 - - -
CFML Loans 9.45 - - -
China Construction Bank - 7.09 6.75 6.49
China Construction Bank Special - - - -
Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - 7.15 - -
Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 8.40 7.35 6.89 6.75
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Co-operative Bank - Standard 8.40 7.85 7.39 7.25
Credit Union Auckland 7.70 - - -
First Credit Union Special - 7.45 7.35 -
First Credit Union Standard 8.50 7.99 7.85 -
Heartland Bank - Online 7.99 6.69 6.45 6.19
Heartland Bank - Reverse Mortgage - - - -
Heretaunga Building Society 8.90 7.60 7.40 -
HSBC Premier 8.59 - - -
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - - - -
ICBC 7.85 7.05 6.85 6.59
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Kainga Ora 8.64 7.79 7.59 7.29
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - - - -
Kiwibank 8.50 8.35 7.89 7.65
Kiwibank - Offset 8.50 - - -
Kiwibank Special - 7.35 6.89 6.75
Liberty 8.59 8.69 8.79 8.94
Nelson Building Society 9.00 7.90 7.39 -
Pepper Money Advantage 10.49 - - -
Pepper Money Easy 8.69 - - -
Pepper Money Essential 8.29 - - -
Resimac - LVR < 80% 8.84 8.30 7.89 7.69
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
Resimac - LVR < 90% 9.84 9.30 8.89 8.69
Resimac - Specialist Clear (Alt Doc) - - 8.99 -
Resimac - Specialist Clear (Full Doc) - - 9.49 -
SBS Bank 8.74 7.95 7.45 7.29
SBS Bank Special - 7.45 6.95 6.79
SBS Construction lending for FHB - - - -
SBS FirstHome Combo 6.19 7.05 - -
SBS FirstHome Combo - - - -
SBS Unwind reverse equity 9.95 - - -
Select Home Loans 9.24 - - -
TSB Bank 9.44 8.19 7.55 7.55
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
TSB Special 8.64 7.39 6.75 6.75
Unity 8.64 6.99 6.85 -
Unity First Home Buyer special - - 6.45 -
Wairarapa Building Society 8.60 7.15 6.85 -
Westpac 8.64 7.89 7.49 7.25
Westpac Choices Everyday 8.74 - - -
Westpac Offset 8.64 - - -
Westpac Special - 7.29 6.89 6.65
Median 8.64 7.45 7.37 6.79

Last updated: 14 February 2024 1:37pm

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