Amsterdam-based challenger bank bunq has announced that it will become the first European digital bank to start offering mortgages. The neobank has joined Dutch lending platform Tulp to deliver the service, which it expects to roll out in early 2022.
The Dutch fintech will offer mortgages to its users from early next year, as it seeks to challenge traditional banks’ grip on the home-lending market.
First digital bank to offer mortgages
Mortgages are seen as an uphill struggle for digital banks around the world, representing an opportunity to onboard users for the long-term and offering a source of sustainable income in an industry where many struggles to turn a profit. By taking the first steps into mortgage lending, bunq wants to be at the forefront of innovation in digital banking.
Founder and CEO of bunq Ali Niknam says, “At bunq we are constantly innovating and evolving to serve our users. Becoming the first digital bank in Europe to offer our users mortgages is an incredibly exciting development for everyone at bunq.”
The company’s mortgages will initially be available in the Netherlands. Approximately two-thirds of bunq’s home loans on its balance sheet will be covered by the Dutch government’s insurance scheme, which guarantees homes up to €355,000 (amounts for 2022) in the event the borrower defaults.
Speaking on the development, Paul Wessels, co-founder, and CCO of Tulp Group, adds, “Tulp is excited to support Bunq to become a successful new lender in the Dutch market. This partnership is a great opportunity for the further positioning of our existing Dutch lending platform.”
About Tulp Group
Founded in 2015, the firm is a privately owned lending platform. It offers mortgage lending and funding management services. Tulp enables parties to build up and manage mortgage portfolios in The Netherlands.
The company is active in the Dutch residential mortgage market and in the buy to let market. Tulp claims that it was the first lender to introduce a Green buy to let mortgage under the brand De Nederlandse. With four securitisations in the market and a fifth upcoming, Tulp is an active player on the international financial markets.
Securitisation is the financial practice of pooling various types of contractual debt such as residential mortgages, commercial mortgages, auto loans or credit card debt obligations and selling their related cash flows to third party investors as securities.
European challenger bank bunq
European challenger bank bunq was founded in 2012 by Ali Niknam. The entrepreneur invested €98.7M of his own money initially into developing bunq. The neobank claims this allowed it the freedom and independence to build a bank rooted in the wants and needs of its users.
The Dutch fintech company turned out to be the only self-funded challenger bank that branched into 30 European markets without a penny of VC funds. In April 2021, their deposits surpassed €1B for the first time, having doubled in 2019 and then again in 2020.
Earlier in July 2021, bunq announced the largest series A round ever secured by a European fintech. It raised €193M in a deal with British private equity firm Pollen Street Capital, valuing it at approx €1.6B.
Currently, bunq is available in 30 European markets including the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, France, Belgium, Ireland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Norway, and Iceland.
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