Because of the growing success of Bizfi and the amount of attention being devoted to that part of the company, it made perfect sense to rebrand Merchant Cash and Capital into Bizfi, CEO Stephen Sheinbaum said.
Mr. Sheinbaum said the roots for the change started last decade. Merchant Cash and Capital, which had began as a balance sheet lender with a third party sales model, had to react to the changing needs of companies battling the recession’s effects.
“We saw the opportunity to move upstream from a credit perspective,” Mr. Sheinbaum said.
Merchant Cash and Capital knew the market needed lower-cost and longer term products.
They also wanted to be user-friendly, and that would be achieved by leveraging technology to produce a seamless front end experience, Mr. Sheinbaum added.
That meant reducing the amount of time and effort exerted by the customer.
“The underwriting process allows partners and brokers to take the customer right to the contract,” Mr. Sheinbaum explained.
Efficient data sourcing also played a pivotal role, Mr. Sheinbaum explained. Both self-reported and third-party data are employed, with the latter helping reduce the potential for fraud due to source credibility.
Merchant Cash and Capital kept growing, so much that customer demand exceeded available funds, Mr. Sheinbaum said. So Bizfi began working with third party funders while also employing its own sales team and increasing marketing efforts.
The work paid off.
“We forged relationships with scores of lenders,” Mr. Sheinbaum said. “We grew to 45 partners and our own balance sheet company.”
Bizfi’s integrated funding partners include OnDeck, Funding Circle, CAN Capital, Kabbage, IMCA Capital, Bluevine, and SmartBiz.
The success of other aggregators told Mr. Sheinbaum that if he leveraged great technology and application programming interface development he could create a comprehensive opportunity for borrowers.
That is the foundation of Bizfi, which Mr. Sheinbaum likened to Progressive Insurance, where offers, including ones directly from Bizfi, can be viewed next to one another.
Those offers come from several sectors, Mr. Sheinbaum said, including non-banks like Kabbage, Dealstruck and Fundation.
Those funding partners are benefiting from the one-stop shop method, where year-over-year business is up almost 90 percent.
“Our funding partner success has been fantastic,” Mr. Sheinbaum said. “A rising tide lifts all ships.”
Mr. Sheinbaum added that as Bizfi’s success increases, so does the interest from other funders.
“More partners mean more options (for borrowers). They feed off one another.”
Mr. Sheinbaum acknowledged his relationship with companies normally deemed competitors is a unique one.
“We sit in both worlds, but I am rooting for everybody. I am glad to be part of their success.”
Bizfi’s third quarter saw more than $127 million in originations, a double-digit increase from the second quarter. More than 3,500 companies secured financing in Q3.
After launching its white label solution earlier this year at Finovate, Bizfi announced its first customer is global small business cloud-based online accounting software platform Xero, a company serving more than 540,000 customers.
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