upSWOT and NerdWallet Team to Help Small Businesses


Embedded finance platform upSWOT has teamed with NerdWallet to help small businesses.

The partnership, announced Monday (Aug. 7), combines upSWOT’s embedded finance tools and NerdWallet Small Business’ financial guidance to offer small businesses “comprehensive financial solutions.”

According to a company news release, upSWOT’s tools offer business insights based on banking, eCommerce, payroll, marketing, accounting and other subscription software.

“By partnering with upSWOT through this pilot, we will integrate tools and resources that help simplify small business owners’ financial decisions and fuel their growth and success,” said Brandon McDonough, general manager of NerdWallet Small Business.

The partnership is happening at a time when small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are feeling increased strain.

As noted here last week following earnings reports from Shopify and PayPal showing anticipated credit losses due to business loans, roughly half of SMBs are shopping for credit. In addition, 40% of Main Street SMBs with annual revenues of up to $10 million say they don’t have access to ready financing.

“It remains to be seen if the anticipated losses become a reality, or if they are ultimately released,” PYMNTS wrote. “But the delinquency rates signal that for at least some merchants, servicing debt on time may be a bit more onerous a task than had been seen only recently.”

“We’re headed into the all-important holiday shopping season in just a few months,” the report added. “But there’s already evidence that the summer may be bumpy, given that June’s retail sales report missed expectations as retail sales were up 0.2% from May, missing the consensus of 0.5% gains.”

PYMNTS looked at the challenges facing these companies as they seek financing in a conversation last week with Chris Hendrickson, senior vice president of small business strategy at Comerica, and Scott Steinberg, chief product officer and chief operating officer of Enigma.

These executives said a multidimensional underwriting process is necessary to give a crucial lifeline to companies seeking to survive and thrive in an uncertain macro environment.

From Comercia’s POV, said Hendrickson, the tightening of credit underscores the fact that “speed and access to capital will remain very important for small businesses.”

Steinberg added technology can streamline the processes that SMBs must undergo as they apply for credit. Better online onboarding can be a significant improvement here, as can employing alternative data to help forge new ways of scoring risk.

“We’re seeing an increase in interest from banks to leverage data that can help increase the approval rate and find those populations,” especially on the smaller end of the business spectrum that traditional data sources may overlook, Steinberg said.