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SBA Launches Enhanced Lender Match Platform
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March 18, 2024
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Stakeholders Applaud Improved Online Tool That Will Simplify Access to Capital for Small Businesses

WASHINGTON – Today, Administrator Isabel Casillas Guzman announced the next generation of the SBA’s Lender Match tool for small businesses to connect to capital through SBA’s network of approved banks and private lenders. The enhanced Lender Match will provide Americans seeking funding to start and grow their businesses with a simple, online tool that will more effectively match them with the SBA’s competitive lending products and additional offerings from a trusted network of banks and private lenders.

“The Biden-Harris Administration’s economic agenda has ignited a historic Small Business Boom, with 16.5 million new business applications filed since President Biden took office — and the SBA is committed to working in partnership with banks and private lenders to meet all of our businesses where they are, including online,” said Administrator Guzman. Enhancing the SBA’s Lender Match tool is just one part of our unprecedented reforms to increase and streamline equitable access to affordable capital so small business owners can continue to innovate, create jobs, and be part of this Administration’s historic Investments in America.”

 On the enhanced Lender Match platform, small business owners benefit from an improved, mobile-first user interface that ensures better access and usability. Borrowers will now be able to easily view all of their matched lenders in one place, allowing the borrower to find and compare lenders to help them decide where to apply for a loan. The enhanced tool will also verify borrowers and screen for fraud to streamline the process for both lenders and borrowers. Importantly, with Lender Match, small businesses that are not matched to lenders will be connected to the SBA’s local network of free advisors to help them get capital-ready.

Currently, the SBA has large demand from small businesses seeking affordable capital — from microloans and growth capital to equipment and building financing — which the SBA offers with competitive rates and fees, lower down payments, and flexible overhead. Every month, the SBA receives about 50,000 requests for capital through Lender Match. The platform features nearly 1,000 SBA lenders, including 257 community-based lenders, who can connect to potential customers and earn their business. The SBA’s enhanced Lender Match will build on this foundation to make more connections for entrepreneurs seeking capital.

 

Lenders and community leaders also weighed in on the significance of this enhanced platform:

“The enhancements to the SBA's Lender Match platform make it easier for lenders to understand the true needs of a business owner and ultimately get them the capital they need,” said Mike McGinley, Head of Small Business Banking, Live Oak Bank. “Seeing basics about the business, industry, and request summary, as well as interacting through the back office, will be meaningful to our ability to better serve these businesses.”

“The launch of the Small Business Administration’s enhanced Lender Match will reshape the capital landscape for underserved small businesses. With enhanced capabilities, access to equity partners, and rigorous data validation, this next-generation tool will connect small businesses with responsible lenders, including more than 250 mission lenders,” said Harold Pettigrew, President and CEO of Opportunity Finance Network. “This innovative platform will provide small businesses with the financial foundation they need to grow and thrive.” 

“At CDC Small Business Finance, we use the SBA's Lender Match daily, matching with thousands of small businesses who need financing,” said Susan Lamping, Vice President of Sales at Certified Development Company Small Business Finance. “We've found Lender Match to be a very valuable tool to connect us to our target customers. We recognize that there are many online aggregators out there connecting small businesses to lenders, but we value the SBA's role in this process so much since we share the same goal of getting funding into the hands of small businesses without making them pay for brokering the transaction. The SBA is the perfect group to be matching lenders and borrowers and facilitating these connections.”

 “Latino entrepreneurs play a significant role in our economy, but there continue to be barriers to access to capital to grow these businesses and help them reach their full economic potential. NALCAB applauds the SBA’s launch of its enhanced Lender Match platform, a tool that will level the playing field for entrepreneurs lacking existing relationships with banks, making them vulnerable to predatory loan products and services,” said Marla Bilonick, President and CEO of the National Association for Latino community Asset Builders (NALCAB). “While Latino-owned businesses had higher approval rates for loans under $50,000, they were substantially less likely to have larger loans approved. NALCAB looks forward to continuing to work with the SBA to find solutions for our Latino entrepreneurs and unlock the Latino community's full economic potential, building a more robust economy for all."

 "The African American Alliance of CDFI CEOs supports the launch of the SBA’s enhanced Lender Match. This innovative platform is a game-changer for small businesses, particularly those in underserved communities.  By providing a direct connection to non-predatory lenders, Lender Match levels the playing field for entrepreneurs lacking traditional banking relationships and presents an enhanced opportunity for CDFIs to engage with them more effectively.  It's a crucial step forward in addressing the capital access gap and ensuring that small businesses have the opportunity to grow,” said Lenwood V. Long, Sr., CEO of the African American Alliance of CDFI CEOs.

  

About the U.S. Small Business Administration 
The U.S. Small Business Administration helps power the American dream of business ownership. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow, or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.

 

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