Archive for 2021

elfDAO, the Crowdfunding Campaign to Buy Gifts for Kids

December 22, 2021
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elfdao giftsMove over ConstitutionDAO, the latest Decentralized Autonomous Organization, known as elfDAO, is seeking to leverage the power of crypto-fundraising to “fund, organize, and donate gifts to institutions, orphanages, and low-income neighborhood centers [in order to] bring holiday joy to as many children as possible.

It can all be accomplished through an ethereum wallet and an app where the DAO holds the funds, where more than $30,000 was raised in the first 24 hours since the campaign went live. That’s enough to pay for approximately $1,200 gifts for kids.

“We are not formally affiliated with ConstitutionDAO,” a representative of the DAO said, “however, many members of our advisor team were previously part of the core team at ConstitutionDAO. We are so grateful for their guidance.”

The idea for the campaign came from Byeongjun, @bjmoonn on twitter, who was eager to build something meaningful. From there, a team was assembled to turn the concept into reality.

“This is entirely a charitable endeavor,” the representative said. “All funds raised, apart from the 2.5% of funds raised to cover overhead costs (1% for multi-signature wallet and Juicebox gas fees, 1.5% for enDAOment, our fiscal sponsor’s transaction fees) will go towards charitable causes. All overhead costs will be transparently documented and none will be used to compensate the core team — leftover operational funds will be contributed to charity.”

The deadline to contribute is December 31st. The hope is that the DAO will raise $1 million, enough to buy gifts for 40,000 kids.

Some of the logistical questions will be decided by votes cast by the contributors.

“Contributors ($GIFT token holders) will vote on our initial governance proposal, which will set the specifics for how charity proposals and voting by token holders will work,” the representative said.

Contributions can be made via elfDAO.


For full disclosure, I have personally made a donation to the DAO, but I am not a core team member, advisor, or otherwise affiliated with the project.

And One of the Largest Small Business Funders is… Pipe?

December 22, 2021
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pipeIt’s not a loan, Pipe says. Instead businesses can sell their future recurring revenue to investors on a trading platform for cash upfront today. Led by CEO Harry Hurst, the former founder of a rental car delivery service, Pipe has provided an astounding $1.2B worth of capital to businesses this year, putting them on pace to become one of the largest small business finance companies nationwide.

The company claims to have made recurring revenue into an asset class while making Miami their home base, much to the joy of the city’s tech-friendly mayor.

Pipe considers itself to be the “Nasdaq for revenue” and calls its employees “plumbers” instead of sales agents, underwriters, and engineers.

Pipe has already raised $300 million of equity financing in the last year from investors including Shopify, Slack, Okta, HubSpot, Next47, Marc Benioff’s TIME Ventures, Alexis Ohanian’s Seven Seven Six, Chamath Palihapitiya, MaC Ventures, Fin VC, Greenspring Associates, Counterpoint Global (Morgan Stanley) and more at a valuation of over $2 billion.

“Pipe is levelling the playing field for companies in the capital markets,” said Chamath Palihapitiya, Founder & CEO, Social Capital, to finledger. “By taking the underlying contracts that generate recurring revenue streams and making them tradable for the first time, Pipe has unlocked a multi-trillion dollar asset class, revenue.”

Transition to NMLS Extension Postponed to March 15, 2022

December 21, 2021
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With permission for reprint from Leasing News and credit to Ken Greene


California LendingThe California DFPI has extended the deadline for transitioning to the NMLS to March 15, 2022 for all those with a California license.

I had a long talk with the DFPI NMLS specialist and the agency is well aware that the transition process is not simple, and that many companies are having difficulty with it. I was also advised that if an application is pending but not approved when the deadline passes, your license will not be revoked. That is also good news.

This three-month extension should give everyone sufficient time to get the transition done. The process is confusing, but the folks at the DFPI are quite helpful. I urge anyone having difficulty to call them. Still, don’t wait until the last minute!

Here is the announcement:
Extension – NMLS Transition for California Financing Law Licensees: Deadline Extended to March 15, 2022

Notice of Extension

The deadline for licensees under the California Financing Law not currently on NMLS to transition onto NMLS is extended to March 15, 2022.

All licensees not yet on NMLS must establish an account in NMLS and submit their information through NMLS on or before the March 15, 2022 deadline.

Begin by Establishing an Account in NMLS

Licensees seeking to transition onto NMLS may access NMLS’s website here. From this homepage, select the button for “Getting Started – Company.”

To facilitate creating an account in NMLS, all transitioning CFL licensees should be familiar with the documentation required when setting up the account. This NMLS Account Creation Help Document describes step-by-step how to create an NMLS account and the documents needed.

Input Licensee Information

After establishing an account, a licensee must input its information on two electronic forms (three electronic forms if the licensee has branch locations). Information about the licensee is entered on the “Company Form,” MU1. Information about each key personnel (owners, officers, directors, managing members, partners, etc.) is entered on the “Individual Form,” MU2. Information about branch locations/licenses is entered on the “Branch Form,” MU3. After completing the applicable information, submit the information through NMLS.

NMLS has state-specific checklists to assist licensees transitioning onto NMLS, and FAQs for guidance on transitioning a license onto NMLS.

Questions

For questions regarding the creation of an account in NMLS, contact the NMLS Call Center at (855) 665-7123. For questions regarding transitioning a CFL license onto NMLS, contact DFPI at CFL.Inquiries@dfpi.ca.gov or (866) 275-2677.

Finally, for those of you who missed it, here is a link to my Leasing News article from 12/8/21 outlining the CFL to NMLS transition process:
https://leasingnews.org/archives/Nov2021/11_15.htm#cfl

Ken Greene Leasing & Finance Observations
https://leasingnews.org/Pages/greene_observations.html

Ken Greene
Tel: 818.575.9095
Fax: 805.435.7464
ken@kengreenelaw.com
Alternate: kengreenelaw@outlook.com

deBanked’s Most Watched Videos of 2021

December 20, 2021
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deBanked TV made a splash in 2021, generating more than 50,000 views. For the first time ever, we’ve ranked the most watched videos for the year.

1. Moving to Miami

deBanked kicked off a Miami tour in March 2021 that included an interview with Mayor Francis Suarez. The three-part series was the most watched on deBanked TV for all of 2021. (Vid 1 | Vid 2 | Vid 3)

2. One-on-Ones With Industry Professionals

Two in-person interviews streamed live from the deBanked TV studio were virtually neck and neck for 2nd place. Oz Konar of Business Lending Blueprint, who recently spoke at Broker Fair 2021, talked about working as a loan broker from home.

Meanwhile, Jennie Villano’s state of the industry was a more introspective look at doing business during the era of covid, useful marketing tips, and business development.

3. ROK

An inside look at ROK Financial, a Long Island-headquartered broker shop came in at a strong #3.

4. Terminology Lesson

What’s the difference between a lender and a funder? Numerous people have tuned in to find out.

5. Brokers, Brokers, Brokers

It’s tough to pinpoint a firm #5. Multiple videos achieved just about the same level of views. Our viewers love brokers.


Check out some of our top video categories:

deBanked’s Docuseries
MCA/Small Business Lending help
deBanked Event Footage
deBanked News

deBanked’s Top Five Stories of 2021

December 20, 2021
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top storiesdeBanked’s most read stories of 2021 were similar but different to those read in 2020. We broke them down into categories by popularity.

1. Scandal

A South Florida business apparently masquerading as a small business finance company, was by far and away the most read story of 2021. Authorities now believe that it was a $200M+ ponzi scheme with more than 5,500 investors. Unlike other alleged schemes that have rocked the finance world, thousands of people believe the allegations are not true and have rallied around the CEO.

2. Domain Life after Death

The Death of a Thousand Financial Companies, the leading story of deBanked’s March/April 2021 magazine issue, was the 2nd most popular across 2021. In it, deBanked went undercover to find out what happened to the domain names of financial companies that went out of business. The findings were terrifying. (See: Video discussion about the story)

3. Real Estate Investing

Think what you want about crypto as the future because when it came down to it, deBanked readers were vastly more interested in real estate investing. Why Funders Are Investing in Real Estate As Their Side Hustle of Choice was the 3rd most read story of 2021. “[Real estate is] just a way that people who have been successful and spin off a lot of cash for their businesses see as a safe way to diversify their income,” said a lawyer that was interviewed for the story.

4. Regulation

It was a close call between several stories pertaining to regulation. While interest in CFPB-related activity ranked high, so too did a court decision in Florida that ruled on the legality of merchant cash advances. The New York commercial financing disclosure law was also top of mind for many readers as was interest in proposed legislation in Maryland.

5. An Exit

The fall of LendUp, an online consumer lending company, was apparently of great interest in 2021. After some difficult encounters with regulators, the company ceased lending operations. “Although we are no longer lending, we also offer a series of free online education courses designed to boost your financial savvy fast,” the company’s website now says.

RadioShack is Launching a Crypto Swap

December 19, 2021
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RadioShack cryptoIf you had RadioShack on your 2021 DeFi bingo card, congratulations, you’ve won. The company announced that its “mission is to be the first protocol to bridge the gap in mainstream usage of DeFi” and it plans to do this, apparently, by launching a swap.

RadioShack wants to compete with the likes of Uniswap, a smart-contract-based crypto exchange where users can “swap” tokens without having to register on a formal exchange like Coinbase.

The business is a gold mine, according to RadioShack.

“The concept of a swap stands out first and foremost as the place of low-hanging fruit – fruit that is spinning off incredible levels of net profit,” the company said. “Profit not just from speculation like Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, but ones born out of trading fees. Some existing swaps like Uniswap or Sushiswap reportedly are doing $1-$7 million net profit per day! They are the current profitable forces of nature in the DeFi world.”

Use of a “swap” is how tokens issued by the ConstitutionDAO crowdfunding saga leaked out into the publicly tradeable marketplace, for example. What was supposed to be a “governance token” to vote on where a copy of the United States Constitution would be held, instead turned into a tradeable novelty asset (like pogs or baseball cards) with a soaring value, all because of decentralized swapping. More than $100 million worth of the novelty governance tokens stemming from the failed bid to buy the Constitution were traded just in the last 24 hours alone, according to Coinmarketcap.com.

“RadioShack DeFi is focused on the early majority,” the company said. “It will become the first to market with a 100 year old brand name that’s recognized in virtually all 190+ countries in the world.”

Velocity Group USA Names Keith Nason President, Launching KapSource in Q1 2022

December 16, 2021
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velocity group usaMelville, NY – December 16th, 2021 – Velocity Group USA is pleased to announce Keith Nason as the newly appointed President. In conjunction with stepping into the role as President, Nason will continue to hold his position as Chief Operating Officer, building on business development strategies and appointing new members of Velocity Group’s executive team.

“We have undergone many necessary changes over the past year, but the change we are most excited about is appointing Keith Nason as the President of Velocity Group. He has extensive industry experience, as well as the knowledge, innovation and vision to drive growth in 2022. I have no doubt these qualities will help set us apart from our competitors as we continue to expand our business,” said Lisa Gioia, Chief Executive Officer

Nason is an industry veteran with over eight years of experience within the Merchant Cash Advance market, specializing in both top and bottom-line growth, building infrastructure and security, data integrity, risk models, technology, and securing capital through multiple channels.

“Over the last 12 months, we’ve invested a tremendous amount of time, energy, and capital in our team, product, infrastructure and data security, as well as our process. Doing so has positioned us for significant growth in 2022 and beyond,” commented Nason.

He also credited his institutional investors as being a key to success by having faith in the long-term goals of the company, and confidence in the new team to prioritize long-term success over strictly short-term returns. Nason also stated, “It’s a true testament to the team that we were able to completely rebuild our business foundation while still funding over $100MM and producing record returns to our investors.”

With the revamp of the company infrastructure and data security, Velocity Group USA will be launching KapSource within the first quarter of 2022, a “business in a box” model that will allow other members of the industry to use its proprietary technology to increase conversions, alongside a marketplace in which brokers can fund their owns deals and create additional revenue streams through Velocity’s capital sources.

EIDL Applicants Still Waiting for Funds as Deadline Approaches

December 16, 2021
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SBA LoansThere is a major pileup of applicants waiting to hear back from the SBA regarding EIDL applications, according to Iron Capital Equities, a fintech firm who owns websites that help businesses through the EIDL application process. According to a press release by the company, many applicants who have not yet received funding seem to believe they’ve been ghosted by the SBA.

The EIDL deadline to file an application is December 31.

“90% (9 out of 10) of our 400 client applicants are still in limbo, with no update regarding the status of the funds,” states co-founder Matthew Elling. “The short-term economic outlook from small businesses is dim, so these funds are highly sought after.”

Elling insisted that he is in constant contact with his customers, and says his company is doing everything they can to service these clients who are playing the waiting game.

“Even though we are a financial technology company, we still ‘talk’ with our customers,” Elling continued. “We understand their struggles in a post COVID economic environment, we have provided them with advice on the SBA assistance like EIDL and the two PPP rounds for payroll and business expense assistance during and after the government-imposed lockdowns.”

EIDL loans were a beacon of hope for many businesses struggling to survive in the pandemic. This type of  government funding isn’t a grant, and needs to be paid back by the merchant at a term of 30 years at 3.75% annual interest.