Citrus Loans was our first partnership and the first time Strategy Desk built a large-scale tech product from scratch.
While we have built, updated and revised technology platforms for many of our banking and financial services clients as part of larger consulting projects over the years, this was an opportunity to truly innovate and build something new.
We partnered with Aspire Money, who are a market-leading loan broker in different customer segments to make this work. Aspire Money had the industry connections, existing portfolio of lenders and a excellent history of helping customers.
Strategy Desk brought the technology knowledge, innovative customer journey thinking and experience of working on lending products with some of the leading players around the world including MasterCard.
Citrus Loans was built as a fully modular price comparison website and aggregator for loans in customer segments that are poorly served by mainstream lenders.
A lot of other brokers and comparison services in this space at the time would run semi-manual processing that could take days and work with a small panel of lenders.
When Citrus Loans was launched on the new platform, it processed loan applications for c. 30 different lenders with results coming to customers in seconds.
In the spirit of pushing the needle on customer experience, we built a unique customer account area where you could review your offers, see new ones that would arrive from lenders who could not make an immediate decision or reapply in the future with one click.
This was an industry first in the UK and something that none of the mainstream comparison websites offered, although they all followed suit and introduced the same functionality within months.
Citrus Loans was also the first comparison website in the UK to use credit reference bureau to optimise the processing of loan applications and provide better customer outcomes.
The only other company at the time that used bureau data was Clearscore. Unlike their business model of serving the customers the consumer view of their business data, we processed full bureau lending block data in exactly the same way as lenders so we could make precise calls as we matched borrowers with loans.
The technology would parallel process calls to the lending panel and the credit reference agency, use models to determine expected eligibility and serve customers with offers in a fraction of the time it would take our competitors to complete the same process.
After 2 hugely successful years of working in the loan comparison business with Aspire Money, Strategy Desk's other priorities and the growth of the consulting business led to a new chapter.
We loved working with Aspire Money and are super excited about what the future holds for Citrus Loans and the rest of the Aspire Money group which has inherited a huge amount of the technology and innovation that was channelled through the Citrus Loans project.
Strategy Desk learned a great deal in the process, learned a lot about the comparison website industry and honed the technological and development skills for future projects.
We wish Aspire Money the best with Citrus Loans and we look forward to doing more exciting new projects in the future.
Strategy Desk were able to develop and build a brand-new bespoke Citrus Loans website within 2 months including complex back-end integration. Our business was able to process more customers than ever before, gain significant customer journey improvements and revenue growth.
Paul Hall, Operations Director - Aspire Money
Sasha is the Managing Director of Strategy Desk. His favourite food is the New Orleans gumbo and he has launched over 20 new banking products in the last 10 years.