A little over one month after revealing plans to acquire Swift Financial, PayPal has announced that the deal is now complete.
PayPal plans to fully integrate Swift Financial into its payment service “over the course of the next year,” wrote Darrell Esch, PayPal’s vice president and commercial officer of global credit, in a blog post.
Founded in Delaware back in 2006, Swift Financial targets small businesses with cash advances and loans when banks aren’t a viable option.
PayPal has actually offered a working capital program for lending money to small businesses since 2013, and it has loaned more than $3 billion through the program to date. This compares to the $3 billion Amazon has loaned SMEs since the launch of Amazon Lending back in 2011, and the $1.5 billion in loans Square has doled out since launching Square Capital in 2014.
It’s clear there is a battle emerging in the alternative lending market, after the financial crisis 10 years ago led many of the major banks to refuse “risky” loans to small and medium-sized businesses. Tech firms such as PayPal, Amazon, and Square make money when their business customers make money. But the only way for their customers to grow is for them to have access to lines of credit, which is why there has been a concerted effort to offer alternative lending programs. Even Google entered the fray when it partnered with Lending Club to offer low-interest loans to Google partners back in 2015.
“Increasing access to capital is vital to the success of small businesses and is a strategic offering for PayPal, which drives merchants’ sales growth, increases processing volume, and reduces merchant churn,” added Esch.
Now that the deal is closed, Swift’s employees will form part of PayPal’s Business Financing Solutions unit and report directly to Esch.