The LCF Group Acquires Key Strategic Assets from Reliant Funding and Sets Course for a Record-Breaking YearSeptember 18, 2023
New Hyde Park, NY, September 18, 2023 – The LCF Group, the leading capital provider specializing in subprime merchants across all U.S. industries, announced the successful acquisition of select strategic assets and licensing rights for Reliant Funding, a foremost authority in prime funding.
“We’re excited to announce The LCF Group’s successful acquisition of key assets from Reliant. This strategic move not only enhances LCF’s portfolio but also empowers us to offer merchant funding through both ISO partners and directly under the LCF and Reliant brands. With this step, LCF solidifies its position as the leading provider of quick access to working capital for small to mid-size businesses,” shared Andy Parker, CEO of LCF. “We’re making significant progress in our integration, capturing synergies, and realizing the financial advantages of this acquisition. Our focus remains unwavering: to meet the growing funding needs of small businesses nationwide.”
While LCF has resumed funding under the Reliant brand in the direct business, ISOs should stay tuned as the company plans to roll out funding options through the wholesale side of the business with select ISO partners in the coming months.
About The LCF Group
Founded in 2011 and headquartered in New York, The LCF Group is a seasoned MCA capital provider. The company specializes in funding small businesses across all states, industries, and risk factors. To date, LCF has funded more than 8,000 businesses and receives a glowing 4.7 / 5 star rating from more than 1,000 customers on Trustpilot.
The alternative small-business finance community plans to lobby hard against a far-reaching proposed expansion of the New York state lending license. The proposal calls for any person or company that solicits, arranges or facilitates business and consumer loans – or other types of financing – to obtain a license. That could include MCA companies, business loan brokers and ISOs.
Critics claim the expansion, which Governor Andrew M. Cuomo included in his proposed state budget, could trigger a series of ominous and possibly unintended events in the courts and on Wall Street. “It could destroy the industry if the worst comes to fruition,” declared Robert Cook, a partner at Hudson Cook LLP.
Some opponents also contend that the public hasn’t had a reasonable opportunity to respond. “Sneaking a provision with significant impact like this into the budget and not going through regular order is really disturbing,” said Dan Gans, a Washington lobbyist who also serves as executive director of the the Commercial Finance Coalition. “They should allow all the stakeholders to have their voices heard.”
The industry’s trade groups have been quick to react. The Small Business Finance Association has been in contact with New York state legislators to help them understand the ramifications of the proposal, according to Stephen Denis, the trade group’s executive director. Meanwhile, Gans is recommending that the CFC’s board hire an Albany lobbying firm to help advance the industry’s interests.
New York’s current consumer licensing law is written broadly enough to cover any loan to an individual for less than $25,000, even if it’s made for commercial purposes, said Cook. That means the current law could cover loans to sole proprietorships but would not affect loans to corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships or limited liability partnerships, he noted.
Under the proposal in Governor Cuomo’s budget, any type of commercial loan of up to $50,000 would require a license, Cook said. Today, the state requires a license only if a loan carries a simple interest rate of more than 16 percent. Under the budget proposal, all lending would require a license, even if the interest rate is less than 16 percent. Loans made by alternative funders typically carry interest rates of 36 percent to 100 percent, he said.
New York already has a criminal usury rate of 25 percent, but lenders have two methods of avoiding that cap, according to Cook. Under one method, the parties to the loan can use a provision called the “choice of law clause” and thus agree that the contract is subject to the laws of a state that does not limit commercial usury rates, he said. Or, using the second method, the small-business finance company can solicit the loan and refer it to a bank in a state without a cap. The bank makes the loan but then sells the loan back to the small-business finance company or an affiliate, he noted.
But adopting the changes proposed in the New York budget could possibly stymie both methods of circumventing the state’s usury laws. Consider the choice of law clause, Cook suggested. The courts could interpret the proposed expansion as an effort by the state to gain more control of commercial lending. That could prompt the courts to refuse to enforce choice of law clauses involving New York state because doing so would violate a significant policy in New York, he maintained. The proposal could also gut the second way around the usury law – the bank model – by requiring employees of out-of-state banks to have a license in order to originate loans or by prohibiting rates in excess of New York’s cap, he said. Both outcomes are speculative but constitute distinct possibilities, he added.
Expanding the license would also grant additional regulatory authority to the New York State Department of Financial Services, Cook maintained. Besides requiring the license, the DFS would have the ability to regulate, supervise and examine commercial lenders, he said. In the past the department has imposed some significant regulations on licensees, including fair lending requirements and cyber security requirements, he said. “They’re a very active regulator,” he contended. “They could require commercial lenders to jump through a lot of hoops that aren’t there today.”
What’s more, time would pass while a company negotiates the initial hoops simply to obtain a license. Qualifying for the current New York license, for example, can take up to nine months, Cook said. “It’s a fairly intensive licensing process that requires a lot of information about the company, the officers and directors of the company,” he noted. “The licensing process is tough in New York.”
The expansion could also limit the industry’s access to capital, Cook warned. Some alternative funders raise money by selling loans or interests in loans on the secondary market. Requiring a license to buy those products could prompt Wall Street to look elsewhere for less-burdensome investment opportunities, he said.
The laundry list of potential bad effects has many in the industry wondering about the state’s intentions toward the industry. “It’s not clear whether the people up in Albany understand the potential effect this has,” Cook said.
To help bring about that understanding, the CFC intends to call upon its members and merchants who have benefitted from alternative finance to visit officials in the state capital, Gans said.
Gans finds reason for optimism as the associations coalesce around the issue. The state Senate in Albany tends to be pro-business, and I am confident we will find allies that will stand up to this, he said.
Denis also seems upbeat about the industry’s efforts to make itself heard in Albany. In Illinois, some legislators failed to differentiate between consumer loans and commercial loans when considering legislation last year, he noted. That might be the case in New York, too, and the SBFA might help them make the distinction, he said. As an example of the differences, he pointed out that business loans often carry high interest rates because of high risk. “We have talked to some folks in Albany, and everyone is receptive to the industry,” he said. Small business is a powerful constituency, he maintains.
Gans, Denis and Cook all said they’re not opposed to legislation or regulation that addresses problems caused by bad actors in the industry, but all three oppose government action that they believe unnecessarily limits members of the industry who are operating in good faith.
The proposed license in New York differs in at least one significant way from the California lending license that many alternative funders have obtained, Cook noted. The California license doesn’t impose a cap on interest rates, he said. If the New York proposal imposed licensing requirements but did not limit interest rates, the industry probably would reluctantly accept it, he suggested.
The Consumer Financial Data Rights (CFDR) group defends consumers’ access to their data and fuels new innovation in fintech
REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Jan. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — The Consumer Financial Data Rights (CFDR), a new industry group formed by some of the most recognized companies in the financial sector, officially launched today in support of the consumers’ right to innovative products and services that improve their financial well-being and are powered by unfettered access to their financial data. As fintech companies increasingly collaborate with banks around the world to provide innovative solutions through open application program interfaces (APIs), this right ensures a consumer can continue to give permission to third party companies to use that individual’s data for managing their personal finances, obtaining loans, making payments, and providing investment advice in addition to many other applications.
The CFDR brings together organizations from across the fintech ecosystem and includes some of the most influential and innovative companies in the financial sector, including the following founding members: Affirm, Betterment, Digit, Envestnet | Yodlee, Kabbage, Personal Capital, Ripple, and Varo Money among many other companies.
Section 1033 of Dodd-Frank codified the consumers’ right to access their personal financial data through technology-powered third party platforms. Together with promoting consumer choice and access to these consumer-first financial health tools, the CFDR is also committed to improving dialogue throughout the financial industry, actively engaging the government and working with banks, fintech innovators, and third party platforms. The CFDR aims to be a resource for policymakers, including the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, as they determine how to best assist consumers in leveraging their own financial data.
“Each consumer’s right to their own financial data is vital in helping to understand their finances and make the best saving and spending decisions,” said Max Levchin, Founder and CEO of Affirm. “As a company we’re committed to helping customers make the best financial decisions and improve their financial lives through technology and improved flexibility, and having a complete picture of a customer’s financial picture is essential to achieving this. As a founding member of the CFDR, we’re committed to ensuring that all consumers have access to data which makes their financial lives better.”
“Consumers and small business owners need to be able to view their entire financial picture to make decisions that are truly in their best interests,” said Rob Frohwein, Co-Founder of Kabbage. “The ability to freely access financial data empowers customers to take actions to improve their financial lives, whether it’s accessing capital to grow a business or better understanding their income streams. Access to financial data is not just vital for customers wanting to enjoy financial health, but it also allows companies to provide better user experiences. Kabbage is thrilled to join other companies also committed to democratizing access to financial data.”
CFDR’s first action will be the submission of a joint comment letter in response to an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking on Enhanced Cyber Risk Management Standards issued by the Federal Reserve, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. The submission will encourage the regulators to establish a risk hierarchy with regard to cybersecurity risk in the fintech industry and will note the importance of continuing to allow consumers to access secure tools that enable their financial well-being.
“Consumers have the right to access financial solutions that allow them to improve their financial well-being,” said Anil Arora, CEO of Envestnet | Yodlee. “The CFDR is committed to initiatives that enable fintech innovation in the United States, much of which has transpired globally including recent open API initiatives in Europe, the Open Banking standard in the UK, and the commitment by the Monetary Authority of Singapore to create an open API economy and promote the secure use of cloud environments. The consumers’ right to unfettered access to their financial data will help enable the continued growth of innovative financial technologies and ultimately help consumers improve their financial health.”
About Consumer Financial Data Rights (CFDR)
The Consumer Financial Data Rights (CFDR) is a new industry group formed by some of the most recognized companies in the financial sector, launched to support the consumers’ right to unfettered access to their financial data. Open data acess is critical to enabling innovative tools that can help consumers improve their financial lives. CFDR members seek to: drive financial innovation in a collaborative ecosystem by bridging the needs of consumers, banks, fintech innovators, and regulators; partner with banks to support unfettered access to consumer and small business data through a secure and open financial system; and promote consumer rights to access and share their financial data with third party companies that provide tools to enable better financial outcomes.
SOURCE Envestnet | Yodlee
MIAMI, Dec. 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Knight Capital Funding, a financial services company dedicated to delivering working capital to small and medium sized businesses in an efficient and transparent manner, announced the hiring of Alex Kondratyev as its Chief Data Scientist.
Kondratyev had been providing financial consulting to Knight Capital prior to accepting the role of Chief Data Scientist. He will be working out of Knight Capital’s new Silicon Valley office. Prior to joining Knight Capital, Kondratyev worked at Cadence Design Systems, a multinational electronic design automation software and engineering services company, as a senior software Architect. At Cadence he led and managed the scheduling group, which was responsible for a kernel of C-to-Silicon synthesis that involves about 20 man-years of development with more than 100,000 lines of C++ code.
“Alex will be integral to our data modeling in all aspects of our business. His expertise will play a critical role in our underwriting models, giving us the enhanced capabilities to mitigate potential fraud, while also increasing our approval ability to get working capital in the hands of small and medium sized businesses,” said Rich Ferrante, CFO at Knight Capital.
“I was intrigued by the rapid growth and unique technology platform at Knight Capital,” said Kondratyev. “I am very happy to have joined and to be a part of the largest funding and revenue months in the Company’s history, which gives us many data points to enhance the prediction power of our models.”
Kondratyev has been in software design his whole career with a specialization in complex algorithms. He began his career as a professor in Logic Design and Foundations of programming. He then joined Cadence Design Systems where he was a founder of C-to-Silicon synthesis group. Later he moved to Xilinx Inc. and worked as Principal engineer before joining Knight Capital. Kondratyev has a Master’s in Computer Science as well as a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the esteemed Saint Petersburg Electrotechnical University in Russia. He holds seven U.S. patents, more than 50 Russian patents, and is co-author of two monographs on asynchronous synthesis with more than 120 conference and journal publications.
About Knight Capital, LLC
Founded in 2013 and with offices in New York, Silicon Valley, Florida, India and Dominican Republic, Knight is a leading financial technology company that provides customized financing solutions to small and medium size businesses in the United States. Knight leverages its leading technology platform to provide solutions to small and medium sized business owners with greater speed and flexibility than in the marketplace. Visit www.knightcapitalfunding.com to learn more.
SOURCE Knight Capital Funding
Kalamata Capital Chairman Steven Mandis is doing more than just approving small businesses up to $750,000 in under 24 hours. He’s also just authored a new book, The Real Madrid Way: How Values Created the Most Successful Sports Team on the Planet.
Not a subject you expected from a tech-driven small business lender? Steven Mandis is not your average industry executive…
Prior to Kalamata, he worked at Goldman Sachs in the investment banking, private equity, and proprietary trading areas. He assisted Hank Paulson and other senior executives on special projects and was a portfolio manager in one of the largest and most successful proprietary trading areas at Goldman. After leaving Goldman, he cofounded a multibillion-dollar global alternative asset management firm that was a trading and investment banking client of Goldman’s.
During the financial crisis, Mandis was a senior adviser to McKinsey & Company before becoming chief of staff to the president and COO of Citigroup and serving on executive, management, and risk committees at the firm.
He’s also an adjunct professor at Columbia Business School, where he teaches classes of MBA and executive MBA students on strategic issues facing investment banks and the European financial crisis.
His first book, What Happened to Goldman Sachs? was widely acclaimed. “Several authors have tackled the question of how Goldman’s culture changed post-1999 but none so deftly as Steven G. Mandis, a banker-turned-sociologist,” wrote the Wall Street Journal. I also read it cover-to-cover myself back in March of 2015.
In Real Madrid, “Mandis is the first researcher to rigorously analyze both the on-the-field and business aspects of a sports team. What he learns is completely unexpected and challenges the conventional wisdom that moneyball-fueled data analytics are the primary instruments of success.”
Former NBA Commissioner David Stern said of the book, “With unprecedented behind-the-scenes access, this book is the most complete study of any sports team ever done–which leads to fascinating conclusions.”
Are you a finance buff? Sports buff? Perhaps both? You’ll want to read his new book.
With Yellow and Green together, the business financing industry just got a little bit more colorful.
Yellowstone’s CEO Isaac Stern and President Jeff Reece have become Fundry’s CEO and President respectively.
“We have a solid foundation and a very successful business model,” Stern said. “But to maintain a position of leadership in this industry, we need to grow and we are evolving.”
Yellowstone Capital has been the subject of several news stories lately, most recently by being approved for up to $3.3 million in tax credits to move their business from New York to New Jersey.
In April, it was revealed that Stern had led a management buyout backed by a private family office that made Stern the only remaining co-founder to retain an equity stake. And in June, the industry learned that the company had originated more than $1.1 billion in deal flow since inception, ranking them high above many of their more well-known peers.
The funding leaderboard which debuted in deBanked’s May/June magazine issue and was broadcast to attendees at the 2nd Annual AltLend conference in New York City, was in many ways a turning point for the industry.
“I would think there are many more branded funders that would have made the list but didn’t,” said Arty Bujan, Managing Member of Cardinal Equity. “Most shocking is Paypal’s $500 million.”
Richard Battista, Vice president of Business Development at theLendster commented on the eye-opening figures of the industry’s largest players in general. “This is a reflection of the explosive growth that the industry is experiencing at the present time,” Battista said. There is a huge demand for funding from small businesses, who have consistently expressed interest in trying out new funding options.”
Perhaps the story of Yellowstone Capital’s rise can best be explained by Grant McCracken’s Five Stages of Disruption Denial. McCracken, who is a Canadian anthropologist and author, known for his books about culture and commerce, explained the theory behind these five stages in the Harvard Business Review in April, 2013. They are Confusion, Repudiation, Shaming, Acceptance, and Forgetting.
Yellowstone Capital confused their competitors when they were first founded in 2009 by substituting split-processing payments for ACH to high-risk merchants. Very few people within the industry understood why they were using the ACH network over relationships with credit card processors that everyone else relied on.
That of course led to the repudiation stage where people thought they were crazy and that their model wouldn’t work and segued into shaming where the concept of providing working capital to high-risk businesses was perceived to be something that no one should do.
Through it all, Stern and his team believed many of America’s small businesses were still being overlooked and underserved despite non-bank financing and online lending growing by leaps and bounds.
“At what point do we stop helping small business?” Stern said to deBanked in response to an inquiry about whether or not some businesses are simply unfundable.
Today, we are in between the Acceptance and Forgetting stages. The ACH debit methodology has almost entirely replaced split-processing and dozens of funding providers claim to specialize in high-risk deals, the very same kind that the industry years ago didn’t understand and resisted.
Yellowstone Capital will serve as Fundry’s ISO relationship arm while Green Capital will serve merchants directly.
“2015 is our biggest year yet, but we really see it as a year of block and tackle work to set up for what needs to be done in 2016 and beyond,” said company president Jeff Reece.
“Yellowstone’s success will simply become the baseline for what Fundry is about to do.”
There’s a rush of excitement at Broker Fair and deBanked Connect. Behind the scenes there is also a fun creative process that sponsors get to prepare for right before every event. SWAG! It can be challenging to think of anything other than pens and Post-its to jazz up one’s table with memorable tchotchkes so here is some unforgettable swag from over the years:
Broker Fair 2019 in the Roosevelt Hotel, as some might recall, had a live basketball hoop by Rapid Finance. LoanMe brought out squeezable stress relievers and what better way to relieve it than squeezing a money wad. Silver sponsor Cooper Asset had special bags that came in handy when collecting all that swag.
At deBanked Connect San Diego 2019, PIRS Capital gave out mouse pads, great for guests to use at work with a constant reminder of where they got it from. Bitty Advance had reusable water containers, smart to stay hydrated while bouncing from sessions to the sponsor showcase room. BFS Capital had a bowl of candy on their table and who doesn’t love a sweet treat after endless meet and greets.
At deBanked Connect Miami 2019, SOS Capital was looking out for everyone by having a bowl of mints out for grab. And if one can’t calculate large numbers without a calculator handy, RTR Recovery had guests covered with that.
After having a virtual Broker Fair in 2020, Lendini stepped it up a notch with a hand-rolled cigar station at the pre-show party in 2021. If one didn’t have a pen and notepad to take down information, Velocity Capital Group made sure to have plenty available. Velocity also had a mini massage station to loosen everyone up after a tense year in quarantine.
Although Covid took some time away from events, the deBanked Connect Miami 2022 sponsors were more ready than ever to show off their swag. FundFi played it safe with hand sanitizers and the LCF Group knew everyone would need a ChapStick throughout the event after talking all day. FinTap got creative with their very own Staples easy-button that said ‘funded.’ Legend Funding had mini piggy banks, ROC Funding Group had cigar cutters, and Lendini had flasks and raffled off a Gucci duffle bag.
Broker Fair 2022 swag was a blend of the practical with the innovative. THOR Capital had shot glasses and if one needed a coaster for that Lifetime Funding had your back. Now that everyone has moved on to wireless headphones, Dedicated Financial GBC brought back wired headphones, which are perfect for flying. Beyonce said it best, “I got hot sauce in my bag swag,” and everyone could too because IOU Financial had mini hot sauce bottles. Following the tradition of raffling their most-wanted Gucci duffle, Lendini also had mini tool kits and Magic 8 Balls that fortuned all good news surrounding the event.
At deBanked events, sponsors always come through with original swag ideas. With Miami 2023 right around the corner, we are excited to see what will be there this year.
Thor Capital Group is a new site sponsor...
please welcome thor capital group as a new site sponsor! to learn more visit: :cool::):cool:...
thor capital group from submitting to greenbox. we value our partnership with you and want to continue to work together." , , i would never send them another file again and i'm not nave to think that backdooring doesn't happen but when companies like this take advantage and get caught red handed twice, it must be brought to the industries attention. beware!...
thor capital group is a leading direct lender of alternative funding solutions accessible to businesses in the united states. t...
thor capital group from submitting to greenbox. we value our partnership with you and want to continue to work together." , , i would never send them another file again and i'm not nave to think that backdooring doesn't happen but when companies like this take advantage and get caught red handed twice, it must be brought to the industries attention. beware!, , yeesh lewish...