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SBA Launches Enhanced Lender Match Tool for Small Businesses

business loan

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has launched an enhanced version of its Lender Match tool that connects small business owners with SBA-approved lenders.

The enhanced platform provides a mobile-first user interface that delivers better access and usability, the SBA said in a Monday (March 4) press release.

With this platform, small businesses can see all their matched lenders in one place, making it easier for them to find lenders, compare them and decide where to apply, according to the release.

The newly enhanced platform will also streamline the process for both borrowers and vendors by verifying borrowers and screening for fraud, the release said.

Any small businesses that are not matched with a lender will be connected to free advisors in the SBA’s local network who will suggest next steps, per the release.

“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,” the release said.

The Lender Match platform currently includes nearly 1,000 SBA lenders and receives about 50,000 requests for capital per month, according to the release.

The new enhancements to the platform are designed to help make more connections between potential borrowers and lenders, the release said.

Together with lending products, Lender Match also helps small businesses access other offerings from a trusted network of banks and private lenders, per the release.

The launch of this enhanced platform comes about seven months after the SBA implemented simplified loan requirements, more widespread automation and an expansion of the number of nonbank lenders that are licensed to issue SBA loans.

The changes, which began taking effect Aug. 1, 2023, are designed to boost the availability of credit to small businesses that have struggled to get finance.

PYMNTS Intelligence has found that small and medium-sized business (SMB) owners must be savvy about the different financing options available to them and carefully weigh the pros and cons of tapping into additional sources of credit.

Most SMBs are unaware of or unfamiliar with the range of financing options available, according to “Main Street Health Q2 2023: Credit’s Key Role in SMBs’ Plans,” a PYMNTS Intelligence and Enigma collaboration.