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Axis Auto Finance appoints Anderson as director

2022-04-19 13:34 ET - News Release

Mr. Todd Hudson reports


Axis Auto Finance Inc. has appointed Ian Anderson, president of Westlake Financial, to its board of directors.


  • NowLake Technology LLC, the financial technology parent company of Westlake Financial, owns a 24-per-cent equity stake in Axis.
  • With a portfolio of over $15-billion (U.S.), Westlake is the largest privately held auto finance company in the United States.
  • Westlake is majority owned by Don Hankey and Marubeni Corp. of Japan.
  • After his appointment as president in 2008, Mr. Anderson took Westlake from $400-million (U.S.) in assets to over $15-billion (U.S.) currently.

"I am very pleased to welcome Mr. Anderson to the board. His industry expertise will help guide Axis for years to come," said Todd Hudson, chief executive officer of Axis. "Similar to Westlake over the last 10 years, innovation is driving the growth of our business as we roll out leading-edge fintech initiatives," he added.

NowLake has invested $15-million into Axis's common shares in November, 2021, and owns approximately 24 per cent of the company. Investment proceeds are being used to develop and roll out digital loan origination channels, as well as general corporate purposes.

Mr. Anderson joined Westlake in 2005 as director of risk management and was appointed group president in 2008. His primary focus is the development and execution of business strategy for Westlake Financial and its six subsidiaries, with emphasis on improving shareholder value and promoting the use of technology. Under his stewardship, Westlake's portfolio grew from $400-million (U.S.) in 2008 to over $15-billion (U.S.) currently, while maintaining above a 30-per-cent return on equity.

Prior to joining Westlake, Mr. Anderson held positions at Bayview Acceptance, Wells Fargo and Triad Financial. He holds a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of California and is a recipient of multiple industry awards.

Founded in 1978, Westlake is the largest privately held auto finance company in the United States, with over $15-billion (U.S.) in assets and 3,300 employees. In 2021, Westlake generated over $3-billion (U.S.) in revenue, resulting in a pretax income of $1.3-billion (U.S.) and a very strong return on equity of 59 per cent.

Mr. Hankey is the founder of Westlake and owns a 71-per-cent stake in the company. Mr. Hankey is currently No. 200 of the Forbes billionaires list. Twenty-two per cent of Westlake is owned by Marubeni, a Japanese conglomerate with operations in 68 countries and $58-billion (U.S.) in revenue in fiscal 2021. The balance of the equity in Westlake is owned by employees.

About Axis Auto Finance Inc.

Axis is a financial technology company changing the way Canadians buy and finance used vehicles. Through its direct-to-consumer portal, DriveAxis, customers can choose their next used vehicle, arrange financing and get the car delivered to their home. In addition, the company continues to grow B2B (business to business) non-prime auto loan originations by delivering innovative technology solutions and superior service to its dealer partner network. All Axis auto loans report to Equifax, resulting in over 70 per cent of customers seeing a significant improvement of their credit scores.

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