CBA looks to make a difference

Commonwealth Bank has inked a new partnership with an Australian property management disruptor called :Different as part of its ongoing drive to develop next-generation digital services for those buying or managing property.

CBA will take a minority shareholding in :Different through its venture-scaling arm, x15ventures. :Different has raised A$25 million in a Series B funding round led by x15ventures and Antler.

CBA and :Different will collaborate on exclusive offers and benefits to reach homeowners across the country. In addition, :Different will soon be able to support CBA’s 15 million customers across various CBA channels throughout the entire home buying journey

CBA group executive retail banking services, Angus Sullivan, believes the partnership will further differentiate and expand what CBA can offer its investor home loan customers.

“Much like our recently announced investments in Amber and Little Birdie, this is an example of us carefully selecting a high-profile, high-growth tech-enabled business and exclusively introducing it to CBA customers to offer an enhanced level of service. We see this partnership as an important part of our overall home buying strategy and one that will be core to the way we support our customers to manage their homes and grow their wealth.”

X15ventures' purpose is to build, buy and invest in new digital businesses that bring disruptive and best in category services to customers.

It has added to the breadth to CBA’s home buying ecosystem with Credit Savvy, Home-in and now :Different, as well as Unloan, a new type of home loan coming soon.

x15ventures managing director Toby Norton-Smith believes the addition of :Different’s platform will add further value to tenants and investors alike.

:Different was co-founded in 2017 by two Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, Mina Radhakrishnan and her husband Ruwin Perera. Both gained deep product development experience while working at Google, Uber and other tech giants. In addition, Radhakrishnan recently became a director of the Tech Council of Australia.

At present, :Different services properties across Australia’s eastern seaboard, with thousands of owners, tenants and properties under management.

Its aim is digitise many parts of property management to remove and reduce pain points, paperwork, administration and time-consuming manual tasks faced by property owners, investors and renters.

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