19 Jul 2012

EQUIFAX AND MONEIO WORK TOGETHER TO DEVELOP NEW 'SOFT' SEARCH FACILITY

EQUIFAX AND MONEIO WORK TOGETHER TO DEVELOP NEW 'SOFT' SEARCH FACILITY

Delivering accurate comparable loan quotes with no impact on credit ratings

London, July 2012 - Leading consumer information provider, Equifax, and loan comparison operation, Moneio which operates the Freedom Finance loan quotation comparison site and The Lending Wizard mortgage broker loans sourcing tool, have joined forces to create a ground breaking new credit risk solution. Building on a long-term partnership between the two companies, the new initiative improves credit risk management in the aggregator market.

Capitalising on the wealth of consumer credit data held by Equifax and its data analytics expertise, Moneio has been able to build a highly accurate loan comparison model based on actual customer credit data, rather than typical data. In addition, the new solution uses a 'soft' search method for quotations, ensuring that there’s no impact on an individual’s credit rating if they are looking to find out about what rates they are most likely to qualify for before committing to a full application and hard credit search.

Currently most brokers or comparison websites show a table of headline low APR rates to attract customers. As there is no credit search conducted or direct interface with the lender at this stage, often when the actual application is made there is a possibility they may be declined. In contrast, Moneio's system integrates with Equifax and a range of major lenders to generate accurate quotes for customers, in seconds and thereby allowing customers to see what they would qualify for before actually applying.

The Moneio search is performed on behalf of multiple lenders in one step and crucially, it only leaves a 'soft' footprint, as it is simply a quotation search. This means it remains invisible to other lenders and has no impact on the customer’s credit rating. With Equifax, Moneio is one of the first comparison services that prevents consumers from potentially affecting their credit rating.

"Our vision is to provide customers with the most transparent, efficient and accurate way to source and buy loans based on their individual circumstances", explained Nicola Georgiou, Managing Director of Moneio. Georgiou continues "We have worked in partnership with Equifax for over five years to produce a loan comparison model that offers the most accurate way to search for a loan from multiple lenders. We can only be as accurate as the data we are using, but our experience proves we can rely on Equifax to deliver the most comprehensive and up-to-date consumer credit information."

"In addition, using Equifax data means we can help customers understand their credit score and gain a picture of their financial commitments. It’s easy for individuals to lose track of the amount of credit they have built up and they may not realise the impact of missing payments."

Johanna Edwards, Sales Director of Equifax adds, “This new initiative is an important step forward for the comparison market, allowing consumers to gain access to the most accurate quotes and shop around for credit without affecting their own credit score.”

"Moneio’s partnerships with several large brands, including major banks, mean it’s vital that it delivers the most accurate quotes for its customers. Working closely with Moneio, we have developed a solution that delivers the level of accuracy it needs to create fast, effective quotes, in an instant."

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For further press information, please contact: Wendy Harrison, Cecile Stearn, Jenny Thorneywork or Clare Watson at HSL on 020 8977 9132 / Fax: 020 8977 5200 or Email: equifaxbtobteam@harrisonsadler.com.

About Equifax

Equifax is a global leader in consumer, commercial and workforce information solutions, providing businesses of all sizes and consumers with information they can trust. We organize and assimilate data on more than 500 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide, and use advanced analytics and proprietary technology to create and deliver customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 18 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. For more information, please visit www.equifax.com.

About Moneio

Moneio Ltd was established in 2007 to research and develop an online loan application platform coupled with a multi-lender decision engine. We have partnered with some of the most recognised and established lenders in the UK, including Sainsbury’s Bank, Zopa and Secure Trust Bank, in order to build a representative whole of market panel and develop a unique platform that determines, in real time, the most appropriate credit option for a specific borrower profile (matching personal information, credit bureau data and lender’s criteria and scorecard). We provide this solution under the Freedom Finance and The Lending Wizard brands.