Home music industry Santa Rosa digital lending startup CuneXus acquired by midwestern investment firm CUNA...

Santa Rosa digital lending startup CuneXus acquired by midwestern investment firm CUNA Mutual


Santa Rosa-based CuneXus Solutions, which started 13 years ago with an idea to simplify loan origination and now serves over 100 institutions, has been acquired by CUNA Mutual Group, an early investor looking to get started. in digital loans.

In the deal, announced Thursday, CuneXus will retain its offices in Old Courthouse Square, its 19 employees and the innovative spirit that has defined its character over the years, according to founder and CEO Dave Buerger. The co-founder started the business with Darin Chong and John Reich.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Now having a large organization as a parent company supporting his efforts is the best of both worlds for Buerger.

“This only adds another chapter to our growth,” he said.

The Sonoma County company makes licensed software that delivers one-click digital loans on an IT platform designed for financial institutions. More than 100 credit unions and about 25 banks have signed up with the software, which the company says “eliminates loan demands” by analyzing data institutions already have.

Buerger worked for the region’s largest financial cooperative, Redwood Credit Union, between 2001 and 2007. Much like North Bay, he got into wine marketing after that time, before returning to the industry. financial services with a bootstrap startup in 2008.

The takeover by a company of the stature of CUNA Mutual Group raised the profile of CuneXus, he said.

“We exceeded our expectations. We knew CuneXus would be acquired, setting it on the path to an accelerated future. It’s the perfect scenario for us. There were only a few suitors we were interested in, ”Buerger told the Business Journal.

The Madison, Wisconsin-based insurance and investment company for credit unions was an early adopter of seed money into CuneXus.

In 2013, CuneXus launched CPLXpress as a flagship product designed to facilitate consumer loans with “1-click” transactions that deliver personalized offers to customers’ mobile devices. A combination of bank or credit union customer data, loan criteria, and credit history are factored into the offers. In its first year, the product processed $ 200 million in consumer loan value.

Buerger declined to release the private company’s revenue figures.

With 3,600 employees, CUNA Mutual Group has diversified into product services for financial institutions and technology companies. These include investments, workers’ compensation, debt protection and retirement resources. The assets of the 85-year-old state-owned company in 2019 were $ 24.6 billion.

According to company officials, it was looking to expand into digital lending and a technological breakthrough in the insurance division.

“We continue our journey into a more diverse and digitally-driven world,” said CUNA CEO Robert N. Trunzo. “Our company is committed to using technology to improve consumers’ access to the financial solutions that are right for them and to create a more equitable financial system and society.

Ronny Chapman, senior vice president of CUNA Mutual, expressed his company’s goal of using CuneXus’ technology platform to tap into new channels and markets for its insurance business.

“CUNA Mutual Group and CuneXus are fully committed to supporting the nearly 140 financial services customers and 19 million consumers that the CuneXus platform has access to (in order to) meet their lending needs,” Chapman told Business Newspaper. “We will look to grow and expand our partnerships with more credit unions and throughout the financial services industry. “

On that note, Buerger’s former employer weighed in on the buyout.

“We are very happy for CuneXus. CUNA Mutual is a leading service provider to our industry, and this partnership will benefit credit unions and their members nationwide, ”said Brett Martinez, President and CEO of Redwood Credit Union.

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