With an eye to the future of the commercial mortgage industry, Ira Zlotowitz, who recently departed Eastern Union, the firm he co-founded, has launched Gparency, a service to help clients go directly to the bank.
Gauging both the core interests of the banks and the borrowers they serve, Zlotowitz formed Gparency to provide a direct-to-bank formula for the mortgage business. This model empowers borrowers with transparency, technology and professional services with expert touches from top real estate finance executives.
Gparency is oversubscribed, raising the maximum of $15 million in venture-backed capital from over 125 real estate professionals and engaged strategic partners (including Customers Bank), the largest seed round in the commercial space, to fund this new approach to mortgage financing.
“After studying the commercial mortgage market, we saw that 20% of borrowers exclusively use brokers, while 80% want to work directly with banks,” Zlotowitz said. “Many think that broker fee structures for larger deals needed to be changed. This is exactly what we are doing at Gparency.”
Gparency pricing is simple, transparent and straightforward. For a flat fee of $5,000, the model and approach offers a banking team of funding coordinators to underwrite, shop and negotiate term sheets. Once the term sheet is signed, the client can continue directly with the bank or work with Gparency for $500 per hour, with a cap of 30 hours.
“This will be along the lines of the billing model used by lawyers and accountants,” added Zlotowitz.
Prior to founding Eastern Union, Zlotowitz served as a partner at Meridian Capital. He has financed over $50 billion in his career. At Gparency;s debut, 25 analysts, underwriters, researchers, software engineers and debt and equity professionals will be working at the company.
Zlotowitz expects swift growth. “My next steps will be to hire a CTO, as well as more software engineers and underwriters,” he said.
In the future, Gparency will offer long-term plans for clients that will provide all data and tools directly to them through a subscription-based service called Landscape. This will allow clients to see maps with parcels showing public information, banking information and access to all sales brokers in real time, making Gparency’s differentiating technology client-facing.
“Make no mistake, GPARENCY is the future of the mortgage industry. Today’s commercial real estate investors are smarter, banks are more sophisticated, and full-scale, one-size fits all mortgage brokerage firms belong to the past. Our transparency, technology and flat fee pricing structure will empower and free the industry to reach their goals more efficiently and successfully than ever before,” said Zlotowitz.