PayPal is Changing Its Ways, Embracing Main Street

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Bill ReadyPayPal Chief Operating Officer Bill Ready shared his childhood experience of working for his parents’ auto repair shop to convey his understanding of the challenges that face  small businesses.

“Tech has gotten faster, but money has gotten slower,” he said, referring to how small businesses, like his parents’, used to receive most of its money right away in cash. “Now, money is tied up in the digital world and it can take days, even weeks [to collect.]”

Ready said that, through PayPal, small business owners can get their money immediately. He also said that some small business owners can get loans from PayPal almost instantly. He gave the example of a business owner in Arizona with a staff of 12 who couldn’t get a loan from a bank because his company didn’t have assets. But the company did have a payment history with PayPal which qualified it for a small business loan that Ready said hit the owner’s account in 30 seconds.

Not all of Ready’s presentation touted the company’s capabilities. Part of his talk had an apologetic tone.

“Paypal was hesitant about partnerships, but not anymore,” he said, acknowledging that helping “Mainstreet” will require the collaboration of fintech companies and changing attitudes about customers.

“You might have heard people say ‘Who owns the customer?’ We’ve been guilty of that,” he said.

But Ready said that PayPal has changed its perspective and that they want to make it easy for other fintech companies to partner with them.

Last modified: October 23, 2018
Todd Stone


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