Australian FinTech company profile #107 – Driva

Australian FinTech company profile #107 – Driva

1. Company Name:

  • Driva

2. Website:

3. Key Staff & Titles:

  • Scott Montarello – Co-Founder and Co-CEO (Operations)
  • William Brown – Co-Founder and Co-CEO (Product)
  • Viktor Shlapkin – Head of Engineering

4. Location(s):

  • Darlinghurst, Sydney

5. In one sentence, what does your fintech do?:

Driva navigates the car buying journey, helping customers find and apply for their best car loan match by running their details against our proprietary pricing platform

6. How / why did you start your fintech company?:

In 2017, our CEO Scott tried to buy a car. It was an extremely painful process – and when the conversation turned to financing, things only got worse.
Scott went through the lengthy process of compiling all supporting documentation and the dealer lodged a loan application on his behalf. Four and a half days later, Scott learned that despite his good employment history and credit score, his application had been declined with no explanation.
What he didn’t realise until later was that the process also resulted in two separate enquiries on his credit file for lenders he wasn’t eligible for, which lowered his credit score and made his ability to secure financing in the future even worse.
Since Scott’s car-buying journey disaster in 2017, he and Driva’s other co-founder, Will Brown, both had exposure to mainly financial services companies in their corporate jobs such as the big banks. They both realised how underserved the auto-finance industry was, which compelled them to leave and found Driva in September 2019.

7. What is the best thing your company has achieved or learnt along the way (this can include awards, capital raising etc)?:

After being founded in September and raising a pre-seed round in January 2020, Driva has achieved a number of significant milestones including:
  • Settling well over $5m in loans
  • Having 10k+ product users
  • Managing to grow volumes at 30%+ per quarter

8. What’s some advice you’d give to an aspiring start-up?:

MVP everything
  • It’s a cliched, but the saying is around for a reason
  • Every time you’re thinking of building a new product, releasing a new feature, or even trialling a new subscription – try and get it in the hands of customers as soon as possible
  • We’ve had features that we assumed were super important for the user – but after releasing them in usable (but low-tech) form, we quickly found that they weren’t as useful as we originally anticipated and therefore should be de-prioritised

9. What’s next for your company? And are you looking to expand overseas or stay focussed on Australia?:

  • Driva remains laser focused on the Australian auto-finance market for now
  • Driva is hoping to continue to build upon it’s existing finance & insurance offering by exploring the addition of other parts of the car-buying journey (e.g. vehicle search)

10. What other fintechs or companies do you admire?:

  • Athena
  • Credible
  • Carvarna

11. What’s the most interesting or funniest moment that’s happened in your company’s lifetime?:

  • Launching the product as Corona shook the world!