UPS Launches E-Commerce Plug-Ins To Benefit Small Businesses

Send Press Releases with GlobeNewswire | January 20, 2020

Today announced that it is offering free plug-ins to make UPS tools and services seamlessly available within four popular e-commerce platforms: WooCommerce, PrestaShop, OpenCart and Magento. This offering is part of the recently announced UPS® Digital Access Program, which natively integrates UPS’s services into popular e-commerce platforms and provides highly competitive shipping rates to users. By offering these plug-ins, UPS helps merchants quickly and easily open a UPS account and manage multiple aspects of shipping and fulfillment inside their existing e-commerce platform. “As the retail industry rapidly transforms, UPS continues to find new ways to make its industry-leading services more accessible,” said Kevin Warren, UPS chief marketing officer. “With UPS’s Digital Access Program, we’re leveling the e-commerce playing field for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) worldwide, allowing them to offer many of the same services offered by the world’s largest brands.”

Spotlight

In this episode of TalkingSense we’re talking some sense with Craig Rosenberg, Chief Analyst and Co-founder of TOPO. We’ll go behind the scenes of the building of TOPO as well as get the CliffsNotes version of their recent ABM study.


Other News
INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

TTG Imaging Solutions Announces Acquisition by Sentinel Capital Partners

Sentinel Capital Partners | December 28, 2021

TTG Imaging Solutions, LLC (TTG) announced today a partnership with Sentinel Capital Partners, a private equity firm that invests in promising midmarket companies. The partnership between Sentinel and TTG's management team will drive the company's next phase of growth. Sentinel invests in management buyouts, acquisitions of family businesses, corporate divestitures, industry consolidations, and going-private transactions in the United States and Canada. TTG was founded by Jack Tomayko in 2004, and has been highly acquisitive in recent years, completing nine transactions across each of its business units since March 2019. "TTG has achieved significant organic and acquisition growth over the past several years. Our differentiated level of service across all business units, coupled with a customer-centric philosophy, attracts acquisition targets and customers alike." Matt Mastarone, President and CEO of TTG Mastarone continued, "It was our goal to find a partner who shared our vision of TTG within the broader medical imaging industry. We aim to provide the highest quality equipment and service and to deliver value to our customers through turnkey staffing and radiopharmaceutical solutions in our end-to-end model. Sentinel is the right partner to help us grow while maintaining our focus on this goal." "Since its founding, TTG has built a reputation of providing best-in-class services that allow physicians, imaging centers, and hospitals to offer top-quality patient care," said Paul Murphy, a Sentinel Partner. "The TTG team has developed an impressive growth playbook and we are thrilled to provide them the capital and support to significantly expand the business. We look forward to working with TTG's talented team as they enter their next chapter of growth." The TTG end-to-end Solution is comprised of: TTG Imaging Solutions – new and refurbished equipment sales, clinical applications support, parts, and nationwide service that help the marketplace extend the useful life of its valuable medical imaging equipment Cardiac Imaging Solutions – turnkey nuclear, echo, and vascular testing programs that offer physician practices and health systems the flexibility and efficiency of an outsourced model TTG Isotopes – radiopharmaceuticals that include cardiac imaging agents, custom-compounded iodine therapy, and a complete line of products used in general imaging. TTG was honored in 2021 by the Pittsburgh Business Times as the fastest growing organization in the region for the $25-$100 million revenue category. About TTG Imaging Solutions, LLC (TTG) TTG Imaging Solutions provides a breadth of product and service offerings with its End-to-End Solution. Through organic growth, key partnerships, and targeted acquisitions, TTG delivers solutions to a broad continuum of healthcare providers within the United States. ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 13485:2016 certified in sales, repair, refurbishment, installation, parts, and servicing of medical imaging devices. About Sentinel Capital Partners Sentinel specializes in buying and building midmarket businesses in the United States and Canada in partnership with management. Sentinel targets aerospace and defense, business services, consumer, distribution, food and restaurants, franchising, healthcare, and industrial businesses. Sentinel invests in management buyouts, recapitalizations, corporate divestitures, going-private transactions, and structured equity investments of established businesses with EBITDA of up to $80 million. Sentinel also invests in special situations, including balance sheet restructurings, operational turnarounds, and minority junior capital solutions.

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BUSINESS STRATEGY

MeridianLink® Announces Agreement to Acquire StreetShares®

MeridianLink | March 11, 2022

MeridianLink, Inc.®, a leading provider of modern software platforms for financial institutions and consumer reporting agencies, today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire StreetShares®, a mission-driven financial technology company that provides digital small business lending technology to banks and credit unions. StreetShares is an award-winning financial technology company that started in 2014 as a low-cost, digital lender to veteran-owned small businesses. StreetShares later launched its digital business lending platform to allow community banks and credit unions to affordably make small business loans with a 100% digital, omnichannel experience. “StreetShares’ commitment to providing lenders across the U.S. with state-of-the-art business lending capabilities, including business loans, automated decisioning, and business lines of credit, aligns with our focus on empowering more banks and credit unions to better serve consumers and communities. Adding the StreetShares team, technology, and strong partnerships with organizations like Fiserv to the MeridianLink family will accelerate our small business lending capabilities and further strengthen our MeridianLink One platform.” Nicolaas Vlok, CEO of MeridianLink The StreetShares Atlas Platform™ enables banks and credit unions to get up and running in a fully digital, business lending environment in 45 days or less. Built by experienced business bankers, The Atlas Platform enables community lenders to use data-driven technology to deliver a superior digital banking product experience to their small business customers. It also specifically addresses the key challenges in small business risk assessment and decisioning to meet the financing needs of small businesses efficiently. “StreetShares is thrilled to join forces with the innovators at MeridianLink to better serve America’s main street business owners,” said Mark L. Rockefeller, StreetShares co-founder and CEO. Mickey Konson, StreetShares co-founder and president added, “Enhancing MeridianLink’s platform with StreetShares’ Atlas Platform technology will provide community banks and credit unions with industry-leading tools to better serve small business customers.” About MeridianLink MeridianLink® is a leading provider of cloud-based software solutions for financial institutions, including banks, credit unions, mortgage lenders, specialty lending providers, and consumer reporting agencies. Headquartered in Costa Mesa, California, MeridianLink provides services to more than 1,900 customers, including a majority of the financial institutions on Forbes’ 2021 lists of America’s Best Credit Unions and Banks. About StreetShares StreetShares is a small business banking software-as-a-service (SaaS) technology company that powers community banks, credit unions, and non-financial organizations. Its Atlas Platform offers a full suite of digital, white-labeled, small business banking products to their customers. StreetShares technology was voted “Best in Show” by community bank executives at the American Banker Small Biz Banking Conference, and the StreetShares team has been recognized as EY Entrepreneurs of the Year, Innovators of the Year, and other honors.

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FINANCE

FundThrough Acquires BlueVine’s Invoice Factoring Business

FundThrough | January 14, 2022

FundThrough, a financial technology platform that solves cash flow challenges for growing businesses through fast invoice payments, today announced that it has acquired the invoice factoring business of financial technology company BlueVine. The acquisition fast tracks the company’s strategic focus on embedded finance and its expansion efforts in the U.S. market, doubling the number of U.S. clients that will rely on FundThrough to turn unpaid invoices into working capital. All BlueVine invoice funding division employees are joining FundThrough as part of the transaction. FundThrough has grown 1,071% over the past three years and almost 300% since last year, funding thousands of B2B clients since the company was founded in 2014. The fintech company has scaled to process more than USD$120 million dollars in funding per month while being extremely capital efficient, having only raised $25 million dollars in equity since its inception. The acquisition is expected to more than double the number of funding transactions that FundThrough makes annually. Cash flow is the number one problem facing small businesses. According to QuickBooks data, 81% of surveyed businesses said that their customers had been late on their payments more often in 2021 compared to previous years, and 89% said late payments limit their growth. According to FundThrough client data, small businesses wait 60 days on average for customers to pay their invoices. FundThrough addresses this issue through its AI-powered funding platform, which generates automated offers for a seamless onboarding and funding experience. Through its technology, along with key partnerships with companies such as Intuit and Enverus, FundThrough cuts that waiting time by 97 percent to accelerate access to cash flow for small businesses. “We are committed to helping small businesses grow and thrive – especially those who sell to large customers where long payment terms and a lack of financing options stand in the way of growing a business. BlueVine was one of our biggest competitors in the U.S. market, and through this acquisition we can fulfill our mission on a much larger scale. We look forward to providing BlueVine’s invoice factoring clients with the same responsive, personalized customer service and seamless funding experience that FundThrough’s existing clients rely on and appreciate.” Steven Uster, co-founder and CEO of FundThrough In addition to accelerating its U.S. expansion, the acquisition also rapidly progresses another core FundThrough strategy: becoming the leader in embedded finance. The additional scale from new channel partnerships and relationships acquired through BlueVine — including all BlueVine factoring partners, who have now transitioned to FundThrough — will fuel FundThrough’s goal of being included within the workflow of B2B marketplaces, ecosystems, and apps where suppliers can request instant payment of their large customer invoices without leaving the workflow. This gives suppliers more opportunities to boost their cash flow, and levels the playing field for small businesses selling to large, powerful customers who often dictate long payment terms. Based in Redwood, California, BlueVine provides financial services to small and mid-sized businesses. The company addresses the banking and working capital needs of business owners with a suite of products including BlueVine Business Checking, Payments, and Line of Credit. Factoring was BlueVine’s founding product. “Since launching BlueVine, we’ve been focused on the financial needs of small businesses and are very proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish. As we evolve our products and services, we continuously examine how we can better serve our customers at scale,” says Eyal Lifsthiz, co-founder and CEO of BlueVine. “We determined that FundThrough is perfectly positioned to serve our factoring clients with the care and individual attention they need and deserve. Our factoring clients will be in great hands with FundThrough.” About FundThrough FundThrough is a leading fintech company accelerating cash flow and enabling growth for small and medium sized businesses that sell to large customers and wait to get paid. Based in Toronto and operating across North America, FundThrough’s AI-powered invoice funding platform gives B2B businesses fast, customized funding offers to get their invoices paid in a few days – rather than a few months – and get quick access to cash they’ve already earned. About BlueVine BlueVine provides small and medium-sized businesses with fast and simple access to financial services built with them in mind. BlueVine’s advanced online platform offers an intuitive, convenient solution designed to meet the banking and working capital needs of today’s business owners with a suite of products including BlueVine Business Checking, Payments, and Line of Credit. Based in Redwood City, California, BlueVine has provided small and medium-sized businesses with access to more than $14 billion in financing with all products combined and is backed by leading private and institutional investors, including Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures, 83North, Citi Ventures, ION Crossover Partners, SVB Capital, Nationwide Insurance, and M12 (Microsoft's Venture Arm). All lines of credit and term loan products are issued by Celtic Bank, a Utah-chartered Industrial Bank, Member FDIC. Banking Services provided by Coastal Community Bank, Member FDIC.

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INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Citi to Exit Consumer, Small Business and Middle Market Banking Operations in Mexico

Citi | January 12, 2022

Citi today announced that it intends to exit the consumer, small business and middle market banking operations of Citibanamex as part of its strategic refresh. Citi will continue to operate a locally-licensed banking business in Mexico through its global Institutional Clients Group. Citi has operated in Mexico for more than a century and the country will remain among Citi’s top institutional markets outside of the U.S. Citi will continue to invest in and grow those institutional banking operations, along with its Private Banking franchise. “The decision to exit the consumer, small business and middle market banking businesses in Mexico is fully aligned with the principles of our strategy refresh – we’ll be able to direct our resources to opportunities aligned with our core strengths and competitive advantages, focus on businesses that benefit from connectivity to our global network, and we will further simplify our bank.” Citi CEO Jane Fraser Fraser continued, “Mexico is a priority market for Citi – that will not change. We expect Mexico to be a major recipient of global investment and trade flows in the years ahead, and we are confident about the country’s trajectory. Citi is uniquely positioned to support cross-border capital markets activity and trade flows in and out of Mexico for our institutional clients and we will continue to make material investments in our institutional operations and market-leading hub there.” Citi’s planned divestitures of its consumer businesses across Mexico, Asia and Europe are aligned with the repositioning of its consumer operations to focus on wealth centers globally as well as payments and lending and a targeted retail presence in the U.S. Banco Nacional de México is a leading bank in Mexico with an iconic brand and rich history. Citi has made meaningful investments in this business over the course of the last two decades, greatly enhancing its digital and mobile banking capabilities, strengthening its technology infrastructure, modernizing its branch and ATM network, deepening relationships with key customer segments and advancing its financial inclusion efforts. “The strategy refresh Citi has undertaken will result in a stronger, more focused bank,” said Mark Mason, Citi’s Chief Financial Officer. “We will execute a targeted consumer strategy, double down in wealth, and focus on our higher-returning institutional businesses where we have competitive advantages. Our emphasis is on opportunities where our global network uniquely positions us to support clients who are growing and facing an ever-changing set of complex dynamics around the world.” The businesses in the intended exit include the Mexico consumer and small business banking operations, reported as part of Citi’s Global Consumer Banking segment, as well as the Mexico middle market banking business, reported in Citi’s Institutional Clients Group segment. The Mexico consumer and small business banking operations included in the intended exit represent the entirety of the Latin America Global Consumer Banking unit. In the first three quarters of 2021, the businesses Citi intends to exit together accounted for approximately $3.5 billion in revenue, $1.2 billion in earnings before tax, $44 billion in assets, and $4 billion in average allocated TCE. Additional information about the operations Citi intends to exit in Mexico will be included in the 2021 fourth quarter earnings report on January 14, 2022. A link to Citi’s Current Report on Form 8-K filed today regarding the exit can be found here. The method and timing of Citi’s exit from its consumer, small business and middle market banking operations in Mexico, which could include a sale or a public market alternative, will be determined by Citi and will be aligned with its objectives of maximizing shareholder value and strengthening both the businesses that Citi will exit and those it will retain. The exit process is subject to various conditions and approvals, including applicable regulatory approvals in both the U.S. and Mexico. About Citi Citi, the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit, corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services, and wealth management.

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Spotlight

In this episode of TalkingSense we’re talking some sense with Craig Rosenberg, Chief Analyst and Co-founder of TOPO. We’ll go behind the scenes of the building of TOPO as well as get the CliffsNotes version of their recent ABM study.

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