Plaid, a startup being acquired by Visa, wants to help money get to those who need loans faster. To do so, it’s attacking the problem of how long it takes to acquire payroll data, according to a report by CNBC.
According to Plaid, payroll data is a necessary requirement that a company must have on hand in order to apply for a loan.
But the process of getting it can sometimes take days or weeks.
Given the current situation, in which the coronavirus has shut down huge swathes of the working world and left companies and employees with no funds, that might be too long to wait, Plaid said.
The company, then, is working on a new project that it claims will be able to reduce the time it takes to work on payroll data down to a matter of minutes. Plaid CEO Zach Perret told CNBC that this could mean the difference between a business and employees weathering the storm of the virus or being added to the growing pile of the unemployed in the U.S.
The product will help to share payroll data in a quick and secure way, and to allow banks to add new customers quickly and not be overwhelmed by the avalanche of requests for financial aid as the virus takes its toll on the country.
Plaid said it had seen interest in its new product from at least 100 lenders, including banks and FinTech companies. Plaid has also been in discussions with payroll providers like ADP and Gusto.
The reason for the influx of interest is because of the mass urgency and need to get payment out to companies as quickly as possible due to the virus’s quick and deadly impact over the past month. Companies like Square and Venmo have expressed interest in helping the government in that area.
Plaid’s software can be termed the “plumbing” behind FinTech companies’ machinery, with the ability to connect users’ bank accounts with services like Venmo or PayPal that allow for contactless payments. In December, Plaid said almost a quarter of Americans have bank accounts connected via its services. Plaid was acquired by Visa for $5.3 billion, with the deal still in progress.