The directors of two leading brokerages have merged their companies to form a new business, which aims to be the largest independent finance broking operation in South Australia.
Oracle Lending Solutions director Angelo Benedetti and Afirm Financial director Leon Spadavecchia have launched a new brokering company, Financia.
The new Adelaide-based brokerage, which will begin trading on 3 October and has a loan book of just under $1 billion, will comprise eight brokers (three of whom are also financial planners), one dedicated financial planner and six support staff.
According to the directors, Financia was launched to bring together the expertise of both brokerages and provide clients with a holistic brokerage service.
Speaking to The Adviser, Mr Benedetti said: “There are several large broking firms in Adelaide that are probably considered by the consumer public as dinosaurs. With us and our team, we do wanted to bring in a new vibrant energy to the market and we're very passionate about what we do rather than being order takers.”
He explained: “There is a lot of entrepreneurism now in being a broker and you need to be on the ball to ensure that you can actually get the deal across the line with the lenders tightening up. And I feel that that is what our expertise is — we're passionate about what we do, we care and we have the expertise to offer clients an excellent experience.”
The two AFG brokers first met at an industry event in 2004 but only decided to merge their companies last year.
“We thought it was a good time to give it a shake, as the finance world is changing,” Mr Spadavecchia said.
“Around 90 per cent of our business at Afirm was residential, so we had a bit of a missing link, and Angelo's business, Oracle, has a forte in commercial and equipment. So, by coming together, we can offer a more a holistic offering with award-winning service.
“Financia will offer clients home loans, car loans, business loans, investment property, cash flow finance… we're a one-stop shop.”
According to Mr Spadavecchia, the company will ensure it is non-partisan with leads by using a “roster system” in which an executive assistant will monitor incoming leads and assign them to brokers on a rotating basis (and based on the relevant expertise of the broker).
“So, each broker gets the opportunity to take on the lead and then we will monitor the conversion rate per broker for future performance reviews, etc. But everyone in the team will get an opportunity fairly to benefit from the new leads coming through, depending on their expertise.”
The two brokers said that they aim to be the employer of choice for brokers in South Australia and Financia to become the largest independent brokerage in South Australia.