In remarks at the Kauffman Center in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, Small Business Administration chief Maria Contreras-Sweet announced that the agency is launching a new online marketplace that will match potential SBA loan candidates with bank lenders in all 50 states starting immediately. The service will be called Leveraging Information and Networks to Access Capital, or LINC.
With LINC, the SBA joins a burgeoning industry of alternative lenders such as Kabbabe, On Deck Capital, and Biz2Credit, which provide financing to small-business owners through digital marketplaces that match lenders and borrowers.
“Small-business lending is the newest frontier for matchmaking service technology,” Contreras-Sweet said. “We are implementing these services today, and will bring SBA lenders and entrepreneurs together.”
Contreras-Sweet says the SBA has worked for the past year to create LINC, and has whittled down the lengthy, paper-intensive application process for its loans to a list of 20 questions. Once answered and submitted online, prospective lenders can reach out to potential loan applicants they think might be a match for their SBA portfolios and continue the process. However, there is no guarantee of a loan, the administrator said.
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