Finli | July 11, 2022
Finli, a payment management platform built for service-based small businesses in the US, has announced the close of its $6 million Seed fundraising round, led by the Urban Innovation Fund. Motley Fool Ventures, M13, Alumni Ventures, and all existing investors also participated in the round. The new injection of funds will be used to expand Finli's team and business banking capabilities, moving towards becoming a holistic financial services solution.
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, 99.9% of US businesses are small businesses. Existing banking and administrative platforms have not built their solutions with the small business of today in mind, many of whom are utilizing five or more services to manage client billing and payments.
"'Our mission is to provide underserved businesses with the financial tools that they need to manage and grow their businesses without taking on hefty fees or complicated workflows. By meeting them where they are, we are giving them back time and money, We intentionally built Finli to solve cumbersome business challenges so that owners and operators can focus on growing their business and not chasing payments."
-Lori Shao, CEO of Finli
Finli's platform is thoughtfully designed for businesses to manage all aspects of invoicing and payments communication, allowing them to use familiar tools and customers to easily pay outstanding invoices through their mobile devices.
"Customers love Finli because it is so easy to use. The Finli team is totally dedicated to lifting up small businesses and owner-operators – and it shows, Many service providers are fearful of big tech taking advantage of them with hidden costs and complex integrations. Finli allows small businesses to regain control – delighting their customers and making more money in the process."
-Clara Brenner, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Urban Innovation Fund
Finli's platform allows small businesses to invoice on the go: sending invoices, looking up customer information, creating recurring invoices and checking on payment status from a phone. New users are able to set up an account and issue an invoice in under one minute through their mobile device, desktop or any other device. There are zero merchant transaction fees for business bank-to-bank transfers. Cash and check payments can be reconciled through Finli's platform and businesses can manage collections through automated emails & text messages.
Finli's seed round brings total funding to $9.5 million. Existing investors include Mac Venture Capital, Slauson and Co, Core Innovation Capital, Techstars and Muse Capital. For more SMB Resources, visit Finli's Finsider blog.
Finli is on a mission to financially lift local communities. An all-in-one payment management platform built for service-based small businesses in the US, Finli allows businesses to manage invoices, payments and customer communication in a single platform. Join the thousands of businesses who have saved hours this week with Finli, visit www.finli.com. And for more business resources, visit Finli's Finsider blog
Nuula | May 18, 2022
Nuula, a fintech company focused on providing small businesses the tools and the capital they need to succeed, announced an initiative to help small business owners improve their overall mental and physical well-being. In partnership with Walnut, Nuula's new wellness feature gives small business owners access to life insurance, plus meditation programs and online fitness classes, all for as little as $9/month.
Nuula's focus on the entrepreneur's well-being, in addition to business performance, was driven by insights into how personal stress is affecting small business owners, especially with the pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A recent Capital One survey found that 45% of small business owners report that running a business during the pandemic has had a negative impact on their mental well-being, and 42% say they are currently experiencing burnout or have experienced it within the past month.
"For a small business owner and entrepreneur, work and life are inextricably linked, which is why it is so important to provide support for both, Nuula is taking a new approach to small business financial services by focusing not only on the needs of the business but also on the needs of the small business owner."
-Mark Ruddock, CEO at Nuula.
Nuula's new health and wellness feature offers access to guided meditation, sleep guides, and mental focus programs through Headspace Plus and online fitness programs through ClassPass Digital. The programs are paired with $10k-$50k of Life Insurance to give small business owners peace of mind. The new feature sits atop of Nuula's existing portfolio of small business tools, including financial health tracking, cash-flow forecasting, 24/7 credit monitoring, as well as updates on rating and reviews, all available in the Nuula app.
"Nuula is taking a forward-looking approach to the needs of small businesses, by embedding tools that match the holistic needs of its customers, Mental and physical health are paramount to entrepreneurial success. Walnut is proud to help Nuula empower business owners by allowing them to easily access health and wellness offerings within Nuula's existing ecosystem of critical financial tools."
-Derek Szeto, Co-founder and CEO of Walnut
Starting today, Nuula users can sign up for a health and wellness membership that includes group life insurance and subscriptions from ClassPass and Headspace.
Nuula is building the future of small business performance. Launched in 2021, Nuula is a financial services and technology company focused on serving the small to medium-sized business community. Nuula provides real-time data and analytics, allowing businesses to manage their finances, monitor their credit ratings and user reviews, and more. Nuula is an advocate of financial inclusivity and a proud partner to Kiva to create economic and social good. To learn more about Nuula, visit www.nuula.com
Founded in 2020, Walnut is a Canadian and US insurtech that has built infrastructure to enable multiple lines of embedded insurance for brokers, employers, and financial services coupled with value added benefits from international brands. Walnut's platform makes insurance simple and convenient – creating greater accessibility for underserved audiences. Learn more about Walnut at www.gowalnut.com/businesses.
Verizon Business | June 21, 2022
Verizon Business announced that it is teaming up with Mastercard and First National Bank of Omaha (FNBO) to launch a credit card designed to bring value to small business owners. In the coming weeks, existing Verizon Business wireless customers with less than 100 lines and an online account will be eligible to apply for the Verizon Business Mastercard®, which rewards purchases on everyday business expenses such as eligible office supplies, technology, fuel, and more.
"Mastercard has been a key partner to us on our journey to help our customers of all sizes transform their businesses and ensure they are truly future-ready,” said Tami Erwin, CEO of Verizon Business. “We are pleased to expand this partnership to include FNBO and bring this small business credit card to our customers at a time when we know they are seeking new avenues to expand their business, manage costs and maximize their use of new technologies to solve challenges to drive growth.”
Here is how it works:
The Verizon Business Mastercard®, which is issued by FNBO, will allow small business owners who apply and are approved to earn and redeem Verizon Business Dollars toward devices or accessories for their business. Benefits and features of the card will include:
Earn Rewards on Eligible Business Purchases*: Earn 5% back on Verizon purchases, like paying your Verizon bill or buying devices from Verizon, during your first billing cycle after account opening;1 3% back on Verizon purchases after your first billing cycle;1 2% back on eligible gas; electronic vehicle charging and office supplies;2 and 1% back on other purchases.3
Get More for Your Business: Earn Verizon Business Dollars on eligible business purchases and redeem them later toward new devices or a Verizon Business wireless bill.
New Cardholder Bonus: Eligible Verizon Business customers who apply and are approved will receive $50 toward their credit card statement after their first purchase on the card* (maximum one bonus per business account).
No Annual Fee4: The Verizon Business Mastercard® has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees.4
Fill Your Digital Toolbox: The Verizon Business Mastercard® features World Elite Mastercard for Business® benefits to help small business owners reach new audiences and grow their businesses, including access to Microsoft Advertising, Zoho Social and Zoho Marketing Pal.5
Assess Your Digital Footprint: Cardholders will have access to Mastercard’s Digital Diagnostic assessment and Digital Doors program, which provides always-on resources for small business owners to set up shop online, grow and manage their business, accept payments, and keep their business protected.
Safe & Secure Payments Experience: The Verizon Business Mastercard® is contactless enabled. Upon approval for the card, cardholders can begin making purchases immediately online, in app, and at the point of sale after adding it to their mobile wallet.
Experience Peace of Mind: The Verizon Business Mastercard® offers Mastercard ID Theft Protection™, Zero Liability6 and Price Protection, in addition to 24/7/365 Global Emergency Services.5
This new offering is the result of a multifaceted partnership between Verizon Business and Mastercard to help provide solutions for the global payments and commerce ecosystems. The global leaders continue to work together to couple Verizon’s 5G connectivity with the power of the Mastercard network. Today’s announcement complements Verizon’s network-as-a-service foundation and supports its core areas of growth and innovation across mobility, nationwide broadband, mobile edge computing and business solutions, the value market and network monetization.
“Today’s small business owner is looking for smarter, relevant, and customized digital financial products that accelerate their operations and make their lives easier,” said Chiro Aikat, Executive Vice President, Products & Engineering, North America at Mastercard. “We’re proud to extend our relationship with Verizon and FNBO to connect the small business segment through meaningful technology and benefits.”
“FNBO has a rich history of helping small businesses grow and succeed, so we are excited to partner with such a respected brand as Verizon on the launch of their first program for small business,” said Jerry J. O’Flanagan, Executive Vice President, Partner Segment at FNBO.
To find out if your business is eligible to apply for the Verizon Business Mastercard® when it officially launches, visit http://verizon.com/business-mastercard-comingsoon.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) was formed on June 30, 2000 and is one of the world’s leading providers of technology and communications services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $133.6 billion in 2021. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers’ demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, security and control.
First National Bank of Omaha (FNBO) is a leader in the credit card partnership arena, with partners in a variety of industries including retail, travel, entertainment, automotive, oil, nonprofits and more. For over 60 years, FNBO has specialized in providing comprehensive credit card programs with personalized service to help its customers achieve their goals. Visit card.fnbo.com for more information.
ABOUT MASTERCARD (NYSE: MA)
Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all. www.mastercard.com
Norma | June 24, 2022
Norma, an all-in-one banking, accounting, and business services platform, has seen interest from members early on with more than 2000 small business pre-registrations for its services. Norma moved from its closed beta to public launch in Turkey and is quickly onboarding small businesses on its list while also acquiring new members. Norma wants to onboard thousands of small businesses in the country before the year end and collect feedback from them to release new features to enhance and automate their financial experience.
Norma completed two successful fundraising rounds within the span of one year; a $350k pre-seed round from various angel investors in Turkey and a seed round of $1,8m led by Global Founders Capital, and joined by MSA Novo, Finberg, D4 Ventures.
The founder Hakan Gonca, a seasoned executive in the Fintech space, is excited about the product release and explains why Turkey is the right place to launch, emphasizing on the crucial role Norma will play in the lives of SMBs and freelancers. Norma wants to build an internationally impactful company, while partnering with globally recognized brands and bringing customer-oriented solutions for small businesses to increase their visibility in the banking system, and to support their financial efficiency.
“All around the world, banking is focused on individual users and the needs of large companies, while ignoring small businesses that need these products the most. Moreover, the products offered to these businesses come with no advantages in terms of segmentation or pricing. Norma offers a next-generation experience by focusing on the needs of these businesses while creating a community where members can learn from each other as well. Norma distinguishes itself from the traditional banking approach by combining all company finance and accounting information on a single platform, while expanding the scope of banking services offered to these businesses. The interest international investors has given us even further assurance that we will make a great deal of difference in banking for small businesses with our customer-oriented vision. Norma is keen to become a multi-regional player and grow both in Turkey and new markets.”