Truework, an income and employment verification platform used by banks, lenders, property managers and employers, today announced a strategic partnership and $24 million in equity funding from consumer credit reporting giant TransUnion.
Founded in 2017, San Francisco-based Truework integrates with third-party services, such as payroll providers, to help mortgage providers and similar lenders verify users and approve loans directly from within their own applications. It can also be used by landlords or would-be employers to carry out background checks.
With its latest partnership, which quietly went live a few weeks ago, TransUnion will effectively be selling Truework’s income verification product alongside its main credit product, meaning that a TransUnion customer such as a bank will be able to access both credit and income data through a single API.
“Having both data sets accessible via the same API and vendor is powerful for the lender and customer,” Truework co-founder and CEO Ryan Sandler explained to TechCrunch. “Especially for the thousands of customers who already use TransUnion for credit data.”
The Equifax factor
Today’s announcement comes some 10 months after Truework closed a $50 million Series C round of funding, and the fact that TransUnion has now made a direct $24 million equity investment is indicative of how deep the partnership between the two companies is. Although it’s far too early to make any wild predictions, it would not be all that surprising if this investment served as a pre-cursor to a full-on acquisition given the synergies between the duo. Indeed, TransUnion is no stranger to the world of M&A, having bought some 10 companies, including venture-backed startups, in the past five years alone.
In the nearer term, however, this partnership puts TransUnion in a stronger position to compete with the likes of industry heavyweight Equifax, which already offers income verification alongside its credit reporting toolset.
“Until recently, Equifax was the only [credit reporting] bureau that had an income verification product, and they were able to maximize distribution of this product through established credit channels,” Sandler said. “This advantage was especially apparent in mortgage, where income and employment verification has become required for conforming loans since the Dodd-Frank Act came into effect. This partnership now allows TransUnion to provide income data through Truework and compete directly in the multi-billion dollar income verification business.”
From Truework’s vantage point, meanwhile, the partnership helps it gain significantly more exposure among some of the world’s biggest companies.
“We are already in many mortgage lenders, and the product drives a ton of value for these customers,” Sandler continued. “Now, TransUnion will be distributing the product to new verticals and use cases, from property management to credit card applications.”