The Rest of the Alternative Lending Industry’s Funding NumbersJuly 1, 2015 | By: Sean Murray
Let’s be serious, the industry’s much bigger than we may have let on when we published the industry leaderboard (some mods have been made) in the May/June issue.
Right after deBanked sent the final file off to the printers in May, PayPal announced that the widely circulated $200 million lifetime funding figures were slightly outdated.
How off were they?
Oh, just by about $300 million or so. By May 7th, PayPal’s Working Capital program for small businesses had already exceeded $500 million. The industry leaderboard has been revised to reflect the news. PayPal says they are funding loans at the rate of $2 million per day, which puts them on pace for more than $700 million a year. Um, wow?
One name that’s missing from that list is Amazon, whose secretive short term business loan program is reported to have already generated hundreds of millions of dollars in loans. Given the $300 million discrepancy that PayPal let ruminate for months, we’re in no position to speculate on Amazon. Anyone could try to assess what they’ve been up to however, since they file UCCs on their clients under the secured party name “AMAZON CAPITAL SERVICES, INC.”
Of course if you’re craving specific numbers, an anonymous source inside Yellowstone Capital revealed that Yellowstone produced $35.5 Million worth of deals in the month of June alone. Yellowstone has a strategically diverse business model that allows them to either fund small businesses in-house (essentially on their own balance sheet) or broker them out to other funders. Yellowstone was listed on deBanked’s May/June industry leaderboard at $1.1 Billion in lifetime deals and $290 Million in 2014. June’s figures indicate that they are probably well on their way to surpassing last year’s numbers.
Curiously, platform/lender/broker/marketplace company Biz2Credit has been hanging on to the same stodgy old number for more than a year.
— Biz2Credit (@biz2credit) June 19, 2015
They were touting that same $1.2 Billion number exactly 1 year ago. Surely they have done more since then? Biz2Credit’s service covers a much wider scope however so a direct comparison with their peers may not be appropriate. A lot of their loans are arranged through traditional banks which are typically transacted in amounts larger than the average $25,000 deal alternative lenders do.
A source familiar with Biz2Credit’s breadth said he observed a deal where the company helped a businessman in Mexico obtain financing to purchase a new helicopter, a transaction which apparently necessitated a team to fly down there to sign paperwork. Definitely not a standard transaction!
When we published the industry leaderboard initially, it admittedly omitted some of the industry’s largest players. Many firms are fairly secretive about the numbers they release and we’re in no position to disclose numbers that aren’t supposed to be public. Below is data that we hadn’t published previously.
The industry’s unsung behemoths
The $300 million lifetime funding figure publicized by NYC-based Fora Financial can’t be that stale. It’s the number currently stated on their website and a late February 2015 company announcement revealed they were only at $295 million at the time. We feel comfortable enough to now have Fora Financial on the leaderboard.
In 2014, Delaware-based Swift Capital revealed that they had funded more than $500 million. It’s unclear how much that’s increased since then.
Credibly (formerly RetailCapital), has publicized that they’ve funded more than $140 million in their lifetime. Founded in Michigan, the company has opened offices in New York, Arizona, and Massachusetts. They’ve been added to the lifetime leaderboard.
New York City-based AmeriMerchant has a claim on their website that they have funded more than $500 million since inception. How much more exactly? We’re not sure.
Coral Springs, FL-based Business Financial Services keeps their figures mostly under wraps but a good guess would place their lifetime figures at somewhere between $700 million and $1.2 billion.
Miami, FL-based 1st Merchant Funding had reportedly funded close to $100 million in the Spring of 2014. It’s uncertain as to where they might be now.
Woodland Hills, CA-based ForwardLine surpassed $250 million in funding as far back as 2013.
Orange, CA-based Quick Bridge Funding disclosed more than $200 million in funding in late 2014.
Troy, MI-based Capital For Merchants has funded $220 million since inception. But there’s more to the story. Capital For Merchants is owned by North American Bancard, a merchant processing firm that acquired another merchant cash advance company, Miami, FL-based Rapid Capital Funding in late 2014. And coincidentally, Rapid Capital Funding had just acquired American Finance Solutions months earlier, which is an Anaheim, CA-based merchant cash advance company that had funded more than $250 million since inception. All told, North American Bancard owns at least three merchant cash advance companies: Capital For Merchants ($220 million), American Finance Solutions ($250 million+), and Rapid Capital Funding (undisclosed). There are rumors that they’re in talks to acquire at least one more company in the space, which, if true, would make North American Bancard one of the industry’s most powerful players.
Don’t bother counting up the above totals
These figures all barely scratch the surface as deBanked’s database indicates there are literally hundreds of genuine direct funders in the industry.
Thanks to the company representatives that took the time to confirm their funding numbers with us directly. Anyone interested in sharing their figures can email firstname.lastname@example.org. If there is a gross inaccuracy somewhere as well, please report it to us.
This page might be updated in the future so check back!Last modified: July 1, 2015
Sean Murray is the founder of deBanked, a 10-year veteran of the merchant cash advance industry, a casual Lending Club and Prosper investor, the co-founder of Daily Funder, an alternative lending speaker, consultant, writer, and enthusiast. Connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on twitter.