Industry News

Fountainhead Hires Former SBA District Director as SVP

January 21, 2022
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Sfountainheadmall business lender Fountainhead has hired former US Airforce Veteran and SBA District Director Joseph Amato as their new Senior Vice President. Amato served for four years as the District Director of the SBA’s Nevada District Office prior to taking his new position at FountainHead.

“Joe’s strong work ethic and extensive knowledge base will be an invaluable asset to Fountainhead, as we build on our past success as the largest nonbank SBA lender in the Southeast and execute our nationwide growth strategy,” said Fountainhead CEO and Founder Chris Hurn.

Amato assisted Nevada’s SBA program in the implementation of stimulus programs that helped keep many Nevadan businesses afloat during pandemic-induced lockdowns. Many of these stimulus programs have been credited to keeping places alive, like the businesses on the Las Vegas strip, for example.

“I’m eager to leverage my experience with the SBA and beyond to help Fountainhead drive financing opportunities and support to millions of small businesses across America,” said Amato.

Codat’s Partnership with Moody’s Brings Real-Time Merchant Accounting Data to Lenders

January 10, 2022
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Moody's logoCodat and Moody’s Analytics are partnering to bring the fintech’s API software into Moody’s CreditLens solution. The move will enable Moody users looking to fund small businesses the ability to access and manage all of the accounting data for the respective merchant looked to be funded.

Along with an effort to increase efficiency in the approval and funding processes, both companies seem to hope that the partnership will also improve access to capital for small businesses across the US.

“We find ourselves in a time of rapid change, where new approaches to financing and technology are becoming increasingly important to small businesses,” said Peter Lord, CEO & Co-Founder of Codat . “Moody’s Analytics has impressive global scale and reach, so this partnership holds the potential to meaningfully reverse the credit crunch facing SMEs while opening up new profitable lines of business for financial institutions.”

“Together we will be able to extend the benefits of Codat’s two-way flow of financial data to more lenders and financial institutions, allowing them easier access to a wider data set to make high-quality, data-driven credit decisions,” said Lord.

CreditLens is a “credit lifecycle management solution” with access to large amounts of data from across the lending space. Codat’s software will enhance data transferring in the CreditLens platform by offering real-time accounting data on merchants that is instantly accessible by Moody users.

“We are excited to welcome Codat as a new accounting data aggregation technology partner to boost the value of Moody’s Analytics lending solutions,” said Eric Grandeo, Product Head for Moody’s Analytics Lending Solutions.”Codat provides a seamless interchange of real-time data to enable valuable credit insights and predictive capabilities.”

“We are both dedicated to helping financial service businesses gain [a] deep understanding of their client’s risk and behavior, and make better decisions based on real-time accounting, banking, and commerce data,” Grandeo continued. “Ultimately, the partnership will afford small businesses across the U.K and U.S. access to more credit options, opportunity and growth.”

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.

Kabbage Re-enters Small Business Funding Arena

December 8, 2021
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Kabbage BannerWhen Kabbage stopped lending in the Spring of 2020, many assumed they would pick up where they left off when they were acquired by American Express. Not quite. Since the deal in August 2020, Kabbage had been repurposed as a checking account service.

On Wednesday, however, Kabbage finally announced a return to funding.

“Kabbage from American Express today launched Kabbage Funding™, offering eligible small businesses flexible lines of credit between $1,000 and $150,000—now with the powerful backing of American Express. With Kabbage Funding, small businesses can apply in minutes to access working capital 24/7 to help manage their company’s cash flow.”

The only strange thing about it is the marketing that makes it sound as if Kabbage had never actually been in the funding business until just now.

Kabbage had been one of the largest online small business lenders in the country in 2019, generating approximately $2.7 billion in loan originations. At the time, it was more than Square, OnDeck, ClearCo, Funding Circle, Amazon, and Shopify.

Broker Fair is HERE

December 5, 2021
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broker fair 2021 handbookMonday kicks off Broker Fair 2021 at Convene at Brookfield Place in lower Manhattan. The venue can be found on the 2nd floor of 225 Liberty Street. You must have a ticket and proof of vaccination to enter. The event is sold out.

deBanked TV will be streaming live from inside the venue where host Johny Fernandez will be talking to attendees throughout the day. You can tune in to watch live on starting in the morning on December 6th.

If you see the below entrance on the 2nd floor of the building on December 6th, you’re at the right place:

Convene Entrance

Bert Goldberg, IFA Founder, Passes Away

December 1, 2021
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If you needed to know anything about the factoring industry, you had to know Bert Goldberg.

Goldberg, who passed away on November 27th, founded the International Factoring Association in 1999. We first crossed paths in April 2016 when he emailed me about a fintech course he had in the works. At the time, the IFA had an astounding 425 member companies.

A model organization, Bert lured me to an IFA Conference in Fort Worth, TX in 2017, which was one of the best events I have ever been to. He was then kind enough to invite me to speak at an IFA Fintech Training Class later that year in Las Vegas, which I took him up on.

Though I did not know him that well, we did share some calls and conversations. His ideas and concepts certainly served as a model for me to follow. He was a very kind and intelligent leader. Rest in Peace.

In an IFA announcement, Heather Villa, Managing Director of the IFA said, “We appreciate the support that the IFA community has provided over these past few months. The IFA is a community that comes together during tough times and we are so grateful to have the group of friends and colleagues that makes up the organization. Bert founded the IFA in 1999 and since then his vision has turned the Factoring industry into an expansive and important resource for small businesses all over the world. We are proud to continue the legacy that Bert built.”

Yes Lender Becomes Fintegra, Brings on Former Federal Reserve Vice Chair

November 15, 2021
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Fintegra WebsiteYes Lender is now Fintegra. Along with the name change, the company is bringing on Roger Ferguson, former Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve (1997-2006) in an advisory role. Ferguson is also an investor in Fintegra.

“Our new name combines ‘fintech’ with ‘integrity’” said Glenn Forman, CEO at Fintegra. [The name] serves as a daily reminder to our customers and colleagues of our mission and values, which we take very seriously.”

The company’s goal is seemingly to write a lot of deals, and get them funded as fast as possible through a fintech application process. According to a press release, the online application can get merchants their funds within 24 hours of their application being submitted.

When touching upon Fintegra’s goals with the rebranding, Forman spoke on a good work environment along with customer-centric business decisions. “We’re committed to putting capital in the hands of entrepreneurs so they can grow their businesses and improve the lives of their customers, suppliers and employees, and we’ll continue to do so in a highly ethical and empathetic way.”

When speaking about the partnership with Ferguson, Forman believes this unprecedented addition will bring equally unprecedented opportunities to this company.

“We’re incredibly fortunate to be able to tap Roger’s wisdom and experience to accelerate Fintegra’s growth. His track record of success and impeccable ethics are perfectly aligned with our brand.”

Forman and Ferguson are looking to rekindle an old working relationship to help Fintegra take off. “While it’s been a few years since we worked together at McKinsey & Company, it feels great to be joining forces again to take Fintegra to new heights.”