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Dynamo makes digital brokers redundant as Countrywide ‘integrates’ technology – exclusive

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  • 09/10/2018
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Countrywide has confirmed plans to ‘integrate’ digital broker Dynamo, which it developed in partnership with Blenheim Chalcot, into Countrywide’s Financial Services business, with its employed advisers reportedly looking for other jobs.

 

Mortgage Solutions understands Dynamo’s broker staff have been made redundant within the last fortnight, with several approaching other London-based digital advisers, including Habito, for work.

The property giant confirmed the digital broker, co-founded by Dan Cobley, former head of Google in the UK and Ireland, is ‘on track to be integrated into the business’.

Countrywide was unwilling to confirm further details about its broker staff or next steps for management including CEO Sebastian McDermott and COO Jenny Watts.

 

Digital strategy

Countrywide said it will continue to work alongside its partners Blenheim Chalcot in building fintech solutions for Countrywide and the financial services market.

Peter Curran, financial services managing director said: “It was always the plan to create a digital mortgage journey for our customers to give them multiple ways to decide how best we can help them with their key mortgage and protection decisions. Dynamo complements our existing financial services business model and provides a truly multi-channel proposition for Countrywide’s customers.”

Dan Cobley, managing partner for fintech at Blenheim Chalcot said: “We are delighted that Countrywide has decided to integrate Dynamo more deeply into its financial services business, and look forward to building further solutions that will improve how the mortgage journey works for consumers, brokers, aggregators and lenders.”

Countrywide’s Financial Services division completed over £15bn of mortgages through its estate agency-based brokers last year.

 

The startup vision

Dynamo launched in April this year in a partnership between the property giant and Blenheim Chalcot and employed nine brokers at its office at One Hammersmith in London. The remortgage-only broker launched on a platform of ‘cutting edge technology’ and free mortgage advice.

Digital brokers can struggle to attract sufficient leads and revenue to support the standalone business model without substantial external investment. Digital adviser Dwell was forced to pivot from consumer-facing services to B2B technology provider, offering its software to other mortgage industry distributors.

By September 2017, digital broker Habito had raised a total of £27m in venture capital funding deals and Trussle closed £13.6m in Series B funding in May this year.

 

NOTE: Countrywide made a ‘significant investment’ in The Buy to Let Business in 2016, which was rebranded this year as Dynamo and the broker firm said reflects the company’s evolution into a dynamic fintech business, catering for all sectors of the mortgage market and not just buy to let.

The Dynamo brand originally launched as a digital mortgage broker by Countrywide and Blenheim Chalcot was shelved in 2018 but resurrected again in April 2019 and is now part of the Countrywide Financial Services group.

 

 

 

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