Business data FinTech ForwardAI has unveiled an update to its Precise API tool to help streamline financial decisions.
First launched in 2021, Precise is an application programming interface (API) that offers cash flow, accounting and financial data for small- to medium-sized business (SMB) lending.
The update “provides small-business lenders with a faster and more powerful version of the Precise API and empowers them to make accurate lending decisions more quickly,” FowardAI Co-founder and CEO Nick Chandi said in a news release.
Chandi adds the tool will also give lenders “the scalable and normalized accounting and financial data they need to make swift and informed decisions.”
“A daily challenge small-business lenders face is the ability to access their accounting and financial data quickly and accurately,” Ciaran Burke, chief operating officer and co-founder at Swoop Funding, said in the release.
Burke also notes that the new Precise is “faster and more efficient, allowing us to focus our time on growing our business.”
PYMNTS spoke to Chandi soon after the launch of Precise about his company’s technology, which extracts data from accounting systems and moves it back in. So when a bank integrates with this technology and permits access to its payment rails, bills and due dates can be delivered, outstanding invoices can be paid, and accounting systems can be updated.
“We have heard from two very large financial institutions so far, where they’re very interested in solving this payment problem for their customers,” Chandi said, pointing out their preference to use their own rail instead of outside processors like PayPal.
“These FinTechs or banks are competing to keep customers on their website [by] offering them more features, more functionality and keeping them more engaged,” Chandi said.
PYMNTS also looked at some of the challenges facing SMBs in lending in a recent conversation with Hicham Oudghiri, CEO of Enigma Technologies.
As Oudghiri told Karen Webster, there’s been a sea change across the financial services spectrum, particularly in terms of lending.
There was a time when getting a loan meant an SMB went to a bank branch, sat down with managers and other lending professionals and held frank talks about the state and future of their business.
Then COVID happened, turning the lender-client relationship into something connected via mobile device. The crucial information about the borrower is collected through the phone connected to the bank account.
For lenders, Oudghrir said, it’s harder to navigate through distorted data and the trends that might conceal true business performance and attractiveness as borrowers.
The pandemic and stimulus payments helped pad consumers’ bank accounts and let them keep spending, which in turn boosted SMBs’ fortunes. Now things are a lot more uncertain, and some SMBs are struggling harder than ever while others are doing well.