Since the waning days of the “great recession,” we have followed various developments in the non-bank, internet-enabled, alternative sources of small business lending. Such “non-bank lending” has been growing as traditional banks, especially the largest ones, are scaling back their small business lending activity. For example, non-bank companies like Amazon are lending funds to their small business sellers while traditional small business services companies like Intuit’s QuickBooks Capital are using artificial intelligence-powered and other technology to provide their customers a better shot at landing a loan. (Note: General data in QuickBooks Online is anonymized while data related to a specific loan application is only shared with the borrower’s permission.)

(Note: Do not make any financial or borrowing decision without consulting with your personal, trusted advisors.)

Various funding sources are using their insight into your previous purchasing and financial patterns to, in turn, provide more insight into their lending decision process. For example, using anonymized data from more than 3.9 million subscribers to QuickBooks Online, the company has insight into small business trends and performance indicators that will help improve the borrowing worthiness of a small business — positive indicators that other lenders may not have.

Examples of thousands of such indicators that QuickBooks Capital may include:

  • Cash flow: QuickBooks provides a comprehensive picture of cash flow because the subscriber ties in their bank accounts and credit cards, as well as other third-party apps, to get a complete picture of their business.
  • Future income: QuickBooks data allows small businesses to get credit for open invoices, work in progress, total inventory, and ongoing projects.
  • Relative performance: Because there are more than 3.9M QuickBooks users, QuickBooks makes it easy to understand how a small business stacks up against others like them.

Launched by Intuit in late 2017, QuickBooks Capital has loaned $277 million in loans to small businesses for working capital.

Is it working? Intuit and thousands of it customers think so.

60%| Percentage of QuickBooks Capital customers who would likely not get a loan elsewhere
46% | Percentage of QuickBooks Capital customers who had never applied or a loan before.  
$277 million | Loans (cumulative) that have been funded by QuickBooks Capital (during its first year-and-a-half).

Correction: QuickBooks Capital was launched in 2017. An earlier version had the wrong date.

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