Lendistry—a minority-owned, tech-enabled lender that aims to lift underserved communities—is expanding to Texas by opening a Dallas office, the company announced at a launch event today at Dallas Startup Week.
With $5 million in funding provided by Dallas-based Texas Capital Bank, Lendistry will be focused on “closing the equity gap in funding” for small, minority, and underserved business owners and startups across Dallas and Texas.
Dallas office is in The Epic
The new Lendistry office is located in The Epic building at 2550 Pacific in Dallas’ Deep Ellum neighborhood east of downtown. The fintech has begun building a local team under its new SVP of Sales, Todd R. Adams, who brings over 20 years of experience in banking and small business finance to the company.
‘Making it easier to access capital’
Based in Brea, California, Lendistry has offices in Los Angeles, Orange County, and Baltimore. The Dallas expansion is Lendistry’s first in the central U.S..
“As new businesses continue to open in record numbers, small business owners in Texas need responsible partners to make it easier to access capital,” CEO Everett K. Sands said in a statement. “Contractors, startups, and nonprofits in particular have unique needs that call for a non-traditional approach. Lendistry is glad to bring them a progressive option.”
Texas Capital Bank: ‘Best way to serve is to listen’
Effie Dennison, EVP and head of community development and corporate social responsibility at Texas Capital Bank, welcomed the opportunity to partner with Lendistry.
“Texas Capital Bank believes that the best way to serve is to listen, and we’ve heard small business owners loud and clear, that they need access to innovative financing options,” Dennison said in the statement. “We’re proud to partner with Lendistry to bring these financing options to Texas in order to support our vibrant small business community.”
With its new partnership with Texas Capital, Lendistry will be launching three new lending products: contractor financing, nonprofit term loans, and startup financing.
Denison spoke at Dallas Startup Week about furthering the partnership with Lendistry, as well as with The DEC’s Tasha Hearns and Bill Chinn, to get businesses access to capital. The bank aims to be “tangible partners and meaningful partners” to help businesses to grow.
“We’ve always had a deep commitment to serve the needs of small businesses, but we are regulated, right, and there’s a certain criteria that we have to fit in a credit box that we have to do for safety and soundness,” Denison said. “I think that makes Lendistry unique is that we’re able to be creative and innovative—and create products that are really needed.”
“Innovative products to support small businesses”
Janet Perez Shensky, SVP strategic partnerships at Lendistry, says the program has deployed over $8 billion in small business capital through its small business lending programs and small business grant program.
“We create innovative products to be able to support small businesses,” Shensky said. When a small business may not be yet bankable, Lendistry is able to offer small business financing through different term products, SBA lending, according to the SVP.
“It’s really important that we listen to that small business to understand their goals and be able to help them with that access to capital,” she said.
“We’re here—and created—to help small businesses and underserved communities and underbanked.” And, she says, “once you graduate to be bankable, this is where Texas Capital Bank can really help.
Texas is receiving billions of dollars from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which has led to many opportunities for contractors in the state.
Lendistry says it will provide contractors who have been in business for two years or more with access to up to $1 million in non-revolving lines of credit, with a preapproval process in place “so eligible contractors can bid with confidence.”
Term loans for nonprofits
Nonprofits are often considered high-risk when it comes to traditional financing, Lendistry says. To increase opportunities both for Texas nonprofits and the underserved communities they help, Lendistry will offer loans up to $5 million to nonprofits, the company says.
Women- and minority-owned startup financing
Lendistry notes that record numbers of new small businesses are entering the marketplace, many owned by women and minorities. For underbanked communities in particular, there’s a growing need for what Lendistry calls “responsible startup capital.” Texas startups—which Lendistry defines as businesses that have been in operation for less than two years—can apply for up to $500,000 under the newly launched product.
Lendistry already provided PPP loans and COVID relief funding in Texas
During the pandemic, Lendistry provided Paycheck Protection Program loans to small businesses in all 50 states, becoming the No. 8 PPP lender in the U.S. in 2021, according to the company. So the company says it will be building on its previous efforts in Texas from the new Dallas office.
Quincy Preston and Kevin Cummings contributed to this report.
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