Home » Industry & Business » The Digital Evolution of the Canadian Lending Landscape
Vlad Sherbatov, Smarter Loans

Vlad Sherbatov

President & Co-Founder, Smarter Loans

Rafael Rositsan, Smarter Loans

Rafael Rositsan

CEO & Co-Founder, Smarter Loans

The Canadian lending landscape has changed drastically over the past decade. This evolution has impacted virtually all types of financing, from personal loans and lines of credit to mortgages and business and auto financing. Thanks to the adoption of new technologies, the entire customer experience can now occur online, in a matter of 24 hours.

Early on, it was the new, innovative lenders that were pushing the industry forward into uncharted waters. They’re often referred to collectively as fintech lenders or alternative lenders because they rely on technology in order to be able to lend to more people, and to do it faster than banks.

Banks and credit unions, however, have since caught up. Some big banks have formed partnerships with fintech firms, while others have launched slick new digital sub-brands to keep up with the trend and to start offering fast financial lending online.

At first, Canadians were skeptical of using online lenders, citing transparency and trust as the biggest obstacles to adoption. However, for the past two years, the sentiment has been moving in the right direction. Proof of this can be found in the Canadian Lending Study 2019, which surveyed over 2,400 Canadians who recently applied for financing.

The study found that:

  • 63% of all research for loans and financing in Canada begins with an online search
  • 48% of people who applied for a loan received it the same day
  • Another 38% received their loan within two to three days

The study was conducted by Smarter Loans, Canada’s original, biggest, and most complete loan comparison website. Smarter Loans represents over 45 of the country’s most reputable and innovative financial brands, loan providers, fintech lenders, big banks, and credit unions that offer financing products online. The website provides Canadians with a safe and easy way to discover financial products, apply from the comfort of their home, and obtain these products quickly.  

“Since our launch in 2016 we’ve been on a mission to move the financial industry forward in Canada by raising awareness and working with the country’s top brands who share our vision,” says Vlad Sherbatov, President and Co-Founder of Smarter Loans. “Now that we represent over 45 companies on our website, it’s amazing to see the fruits of our labour and our vision coming to life. It’s remarkable how far the industry has come, and we’re proud to have had a role in making that happen.”

Smarter Loans isn’t alone on its mission of moving the entire industry forward through awareness, trust, and transparency. The Canadian Lenders Association (CLA), which also launched in 2016, shares this vision, and today houses the majority of Canada’s fintech and online lenders as members of the association. The recent addition of a big bank to the CLA board of directors is further proof that the “traditional” and “alternative” labels no longer apply to the industry.

“The Canadian lending industry will continue to innovate in the digital realm, which means better and faster access to financing for all Canadians,” says Rafael Rositsan, CEO and Co-Founder of Smarter Loans. “As an integral part of the lending ecosystem, we’re excited to serve the entire lending community, including borrowers and financial brands in Canada.”

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