Sagent CEO Dan Sogorka recently joined Founder/CEO of HW Media Clayton Collins for their Housing News podcast. The conversation started with a trip down memory lane —which is quite a thing for folks with the wealth of experience held by these two — and a look at the current state of fintech and the mortgage industry. But the most exciting part (at least for us) was hearing Dan’s transparency about Sagent’s priorities going forward and how the current market cycle is accelerating a paradigm shift toward Sagent’s vision of homeowner-first modernization in this sector.
We’ve put together a quick recap of this 50-minute session, with an emphasis on some of the juiciest bits from Dan’s vision of the future of servicing. Check it out, then listen to the full session (embedded below) as soon as you can.
Mortgage fintech origins
Dan and Clayton reminisced about past market cycles, highlighting the experiences and lessons they’ve taken away. As they recalled, the origin of many of our industry’s fintech leaders was within the largest title companies (listen at 4:04 for Dan’s “sticky note” story). Many of the early mortgage fintech innovations were spearheaded by these companies looking to increase efficiency and reduce manual processes:
You have these offline, manual, people-based transactions, and all along the way people are saying ‘Well how do we do this in a better, faster, cheaper, more efficient, more compliant way?’ — and that’s essentially the mortgage technology industry.
The conversation also described how the rapid growth in mortgage fintech was influenced by economic factors, housing trends, and importantly, the arrival of VC (venture capital) money. This was impactful because it enabled Silicon Valley-style high growth for fintech innovators who were previously focused solely on the bottom line. In this context, the current state of tech in our industry — especially servicing — might appear at once mature and fledgling, which is where the discussion goes next.
Where we are now
These two experts discussed a broad cross-section of our current environment, which was equal parts entertaining and insightful. Notably, one of Dan’s particularly salient comments concerned the state of current platforms operated by some of the biggest entities in the space.
He noted that solutions made up of a “basket of things” — that is, piecemeal solutions brought together via acquisitions — seem like they would be helpful. But if the acquisitions weren’t executed carefully and followed by meaningful investments to integrate them properly, the net result is often a solution that negatively impacts the customers and industry.
At some point the customer says ‘You own both of these things. Make them work together.
Dan went on to share Sagent’s decision-making process when it comes to acquisitions like this, which prioritizes such criteria as, “Do my existing customers want/need this? Does it bring in new customers? Does it check the box for buy vs. build?”
Building the future of servicing
Dan wrapped up by sharing a few concepts he hasn’t explicitly discussed in such a forum before, but which are at the core of what Sagent is building into tomorrow’s servicing technology.
He specifically referenced the “modular nature of technology”:
You can start saying ‘Wow, this POS (point of sale) looks pretty similar to what I do over here on loss mitigation. It’s uploading docs, checking consumer info… do I need two of those, or do I just need one that gets called at a different time in the transaction?’
He explained that, in order to achieve these types of efficiencies, technology in the sector has to get away from monolithic, legacy applications that prevent getting data to the right place in real-time.
In this context, it’s clear why Sagent’s emphasis on cloud-native, homeowner-focused platforms — synced by real-time data, with open-APIs and 7,952 consumer-owned data points made available for configurable workflows — are resonating in the market.
This approach enables a servicer to access their information – whether regulatory, operational, or asset-related – in a single, accessible, and up-to-date location. The end result is an efficient core servicing operation that powers lifetime homeowner relationships —through good times and bad — while serving investors and exceeding regulatory expectations.
This is the new status quo in servicing, and it’s what Sagent stands for.