ASX Limited announced last week that it has partnered with Australian Technology Innovators Pty Limited (ATI), the parent company of InfoTrack, a provider of e-conveyancing technology and services, to enter the national electronic property settlement market.
Sympli Australia, owned 50:50 by the ASX and ATI, has applied to become an Electronic Lodgment Network Operator (ELNO) with the regulator, the Australian Registrars’ National Electronic Conveyancing Council (ARNECC).
“[The] ASX and InfoTrack see an attractive opportunity to deliver a market-leading electronic property settlement service by combining their significant experience and expertise — [the] ASX’s in secure, electronic financial market settlements and InfoTrack’s in property settlement technology and processes,” the group said in a trading update.
“Sympli will offer lawyers, conveyancers and financial institutions a more streamlined and comprehensive technology solution that will seamlessly integrate with clients’ existing practices and systems.
“The service will improve efficiencies and support Australia’s successful transition to full electronic conveyancing and settlement.”
The electronic property settlement industry in Australia is estimated to have potential revenues in excess of $200 million.
The announcement comes as incumbent e-conveyancer PEXA prepares to list on the ASX in what is expected to be one of the biggest IPOs in 2018. Some analysts have estimated the business could be worth between $1.1 billion and $1.4 billion.
Meanwhile, Sympli expects to begin operations towards the end of 2018, subject to regulatory approvals, and the ASX expects to invest approximately $30 million in the new venture over this and the next two financial years.
This will comprise approximately $7 million in 2018, with further investments in 2019 and 2020. The ASX estimates that Sympli will break-even in the 2021 financial year.
“Entering the electronic property settlement market is a natural evolution for [the] ASX. We already settle approximately $70 billion in transactions electronically every day and have been the central settlement venue for the Australian financial market for decades,” ASX managing director and CEO Mr Dominic Stevens said.
“InfoTrack is the ideal partner as the market leader in legal and property search. It has 18 years’ experience and brings a deep understanding of, and connectivity to, the property conveyancing industry.
“Sympli is an exciting opportunity. Combining the experience and expertise of both shareholders will enable Sympli to provide a compelling offering, which we believe will allow users to easily realise the efficiencies of electronic property settlements.”