“Five Questions With…” Peter Esparrago
THE SCORE is very pleased that this month’s guest is Peter Esparrago, Co-Founder & CEO of FinLocker.
Peter Esparrago is a global technology executive with 25+ years of experience. He is Co-Founder & CEO of FinLocker, a financial data analytics company for the mortgage and banking industry. Peter is also a Co-Founder & General Partner of Cultivation Capital, a technology venture capital firm. He was a Scottrade board of director until it was sold to TD Ameritrade. Peter spent 16+ years at Accenture, the world’s largest technology services company, where he was a Partner. He has an MBA in Finance from Rockhurst University, and a BS in Chemical Engineering from University of Missouri. Peter is a governance fellow member of National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD).
What does FinLocker provide to consumers and lenders in order to make home buying easier and/or less costly?
Consumers want control over their data and are willing to share it but expect to receive personalized offers and recommendations in exchange. FinLocker delivers a reusable financial locker with personal finance and education tools to ready borrowers for a home purchase or refinance, by securely capturing and analyzing borrower data, such as employment, income, assets, credit, real estate and other financial information. Sponsors of the financial locker may provide offers or recommendations to the consumer based on his/her profile and goals. Once a consumer is ready to move forward, data can be shared via the locker with a lender, which streamlines the mortgage application and loan manufacturing processes, shortening the time to approve the loan, and lowering the costs.
How do you handle privacy and data security concerns?
Consumer’s data is strongly encrypted in transit over the internet and in the financial locker. FinLocker only collects information about consumers from external parties with the consent of the consumer. The consumer also provides consent to share certain data with a third party like a bank. FinLocker leverages modern information security strategies to secure data in multiple layers of protection. The type of access to accounts is also restricted. It is read only access, meaning it is only possible for the system to view the data, not change it or transact. In addition, FinLocker is SOC 2, Type II compliant.
What has been FinLocker’s biggest breakthrough to date and what do you hope to accomplish over the next year?
FinLocker has been awarded 3 patents (and more pending) in recognition of our innovative platform as well as differentiating FinLocker from competitors. Patents include: 1) control and data access to sensitive data including digital vaults; 2) Data analytics of sensitive data including artificial intelligence; 3) control and visibility into workflows of potentially sensitive data across different operators. FinLocker will continue to advance its platform in being the automated personal financial assistant to consumers for personalized offers and recommendations.
Which other parts of the home purchase and financing process are poised for the most change due to technology and innovation?
The battle for the mortgage customer is happening much earlier in the process…at point of thought, not at mortgage application time. Lenders are starting to use technologies such as FinLocker to engage consumers at point of thought to get them financially ready and educated, while dramatically streamlining the loan eligibility and approval processes.
What areas of the mortgage market will be the toughest to improve via fintech innovation and why?
We believe that serving first time homebuyers and low-to-moderate-income borrowers can be greatly aided with innovation but still is best when technology and a high touch personal relationship are combined. According to the Harvard Center for Joint Housing Studies, minority household formation will represent 88% of the projected household growth by 2038. Providing these consumers with technology and tools that help them in their journey towards homeownership and mortgage readiness and layering on a personal high touch relationship built on trust best positions this segment for success. FinLocker is proud to partner with lenders, credit unions, housing advocacy groups and counseling agencies to help empower consumers to start, achieve and continue their homeownership journey.