Not all online lenders are created equal—at least not according to Michael Finkelstein, CEO and Founder of The Credit Junction.
The Credit Junction solves a problem by catering to small- and medium-sized suppliers, distributors, and manufacturers with annual revenues of about $2 to $25 million. In fact, a typical business seeking funding through The Credit Junction is in the aerospace, automotive, e-commerce, consumer products, or telecommunications industries.
“We’re not financing Main Street,” says Finkelstein.
Why service this particular market size? Finkelstein explains it like this: there are plenty of online lending options available for small businesses seeking loans for $500,000 or less. On the other hand, if you run a larger company and want more than $5 million in financing, you can turn to a traditional bank. But if you fall somewhere in the middle, you might struggle to find a suitable lender. “We recognized a void and we’re filling it,” he says.
Finkelstein founded The Credit Junction in 2014 and its online lending platform was launched just last year. With 15 years of experience as an operational and financial executive at high-growth companies, Finkelstein was ready to start a company that could partner with other businesses to fuel their growth. Although The Credit Junction offers term loans, non-traditional credit lines make up the lion’s share of its business.
Unlike borrowing a lump sum with a term loan that you pay back over time, a line of credit lets you access up to a certain approved amount of cash. This is a popular loan choice for high-growth customers since they only need to make payments on the amount they’re using. In other words, if you borrow $1 million dollars but initially use only $250,000, you’ll only pay interest on the second figure. Think of a line of credit like your credit card: you might have an available credit line of $10,000, but you’ll only make payments on the $2,000 you actually spent.
The Credit Junction loans are secured by your company’s assets, like your inventory and receivables. This is probably the biggest reason why The Credit Junction doesn’t look at your FICO Score or credit history during the initial application process. And here’s another perk: the lender’s lines of credit offer a lower APR than typical online term loans.
The lines of credit offered by The Credit Junction are a bit different from a traditional line of credit you might find at a bank, though: they typically come fully drawn, with the capacity to grow based on your business’s assets and performance over the term of the loan.
To give you a better idea of whether The Credit Junction is a good fit for your company’s funding needs, take a look at the lender at a glance. If you want even more information, scroll down to see more about the actual application process.
Funding Amounts: $500,000 to $5 million.
Cost of Capital: 14% to 19% APR range.
Average Loan Term: 24 months. (But terms can range from 6 to 36 months depending on your company’s needs.)
Average Borrower’s Credit Score: Not applicable! Why? The Credit Junction doesn’t look at your FICO Score to determine your loan eligibility.
Approval Time: This depends on the individual applicant and their loan product. “As soon as we have all of the information, we can turn it around in 48 – 72 hours,” says Finkelstein. The Credit Junction’s initial application processing can take 4 to 7 days, though the final underwriting stage might last a bit longer.
The Credit Junction doesn’t have any particular prerequisites for its loans. That said, you’ll have the best chance of approval if you meet the following checklist:
The Credit Junction doesn’t require that you’ve been in business for a certain amount of time, especially if you meet the criteria listed here.
Besides the reasons we’ve already outlined, here are a couple of other reasons to consider a loan through The Credit Junction.
First, for existing customers, accessing additional funding is a simple and fast process. In fact, there’s no additional documentation needed. Why? Because once you have an existing line of credit, you’ll need to provide The Credit Junction with weekly financials. As the lender already has access to ongoing information and has an established relationship with you, an increased line of credit is a simple request.
All you have to do is call your advisor at The Credit Junction and you’ll typically receive additional funding within 24 hours. By next fall, you’ll be able to request an increased line of credit completely online. You’ll also be approved for the funding in real-time, says Finkelstein. “This is where we’re going. It’s transformative.”
And second, while the application process begins online, The Credit Junction offers a human experience by getting to know you and your company’s financing needs. To that end, you are assigned an advisor, who is always available to help you.
If The Credit Junction seems like a good fit for your business, now is a good time to walk through the application process—step by step.
In this first part of the application, you’ll input your company name, employer identification number (EIN), first name, last name, and email address.
You’ll then hit the “Apply Now” button.
The Credit Junction will send you an email welcoming you and giving you directions to set up an account on its borrower portal.
Once you’ve configured your account, you’ll then need to upload the following financial information in the borrower portal:
Optional: You can provide additional information about your business, like how much debt you have or your future growth plans.
After providing your financial information, you’ll schedule a 15- or 30-minute call with an advisor. During this call, you can ask additional questions about financing and The Credit Junction has the opportunity to learn more about your business.
“More than 90% of our applicants give us all the information before the call, so this makes the call extremely productive,” says Finkelstein.
Typically you’ll receive your loan deal as quickly as 24 hours after speaking on the phone.
If you sign the loan offer, The Credit Junction will do additional due diligence into your company. You’ll then be on your way to receiving that business line of credit.