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Marco Secures Fresh Credit Line and Equity Share

Marco Secures Fresh Credit Line and Equity Share

Miami-based trade finance platform Marco said Monday (Feb. 27) that a fresh $200 million credit line as well as an $8 million equity investment would enable it to pursue rapidly growing trade opportunities in Latin America.

According to a company press release, FinTech has lent over $250 million in its first two years in business, as its financing helped Latin- and certain U.S.-based businesses access the global economy while boosting their own business by 1,500%.

“[We are] addressing one of the most pressing yet underrecognized economic issues of today: the ongoing inability for small exporters in emerging markets to swiftly access capital,” Marco Co-Founder and COO Peter Spradling said in the press statement, adding that times of economic uncertainty are exactly the time when lenders should help businesses.

“The umbrella should be given to businesses when the forecast shows rain, not when it’s sunny,” Spradling added, noting the existence – and opportunity of a $350 billion trade gap in the region and $2 trillion globally.

The inability to secure trade financing disproportionately affects small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), Marco said, suggesting that less than 10% of SMBs in Latin America have access to traditional financing even though they account for 90% of the region’s businesses.

The company said its mission is to simplify and accelerate cross-border trade through the provision of funds and financing tools to SMBs, and it says it has done so with zero losses since its inception and plans to use its new line and funding to expand its business.

The move comes at a time when new PYMNTS research for “The Digital Businesses’ Guide to Latin America,” a PYMNTS and Payoneer collaboration, shows that while the region’s thriving economy offers great growth opportunities, it also presents obstacles in areas like cross-border payments.

“The LatAm economy is in the middle of a historic digital commerce boom, with a wave of innovation rapidly reshaping and expanding the markets,” the report states, a trend that is “creating newfound opportunities for global companies to tap the burgeoning LatAm FinTech and labor markets to drive international expansion.”

British FinTech Paysend and payroll platform Transformify have teamed to help contractors and vendors get paid.

“Paysend will power Transformify’s new payout-to-cards capability for vendors and contractor payroll on-demand,” the companies said in a news release Monday (Feb. 27).

“This will enable Transformify’s business clients to pay their remote employees directly to their Visa or Mastercard, and at a low cost through the Transformify platform.”

To use the Paysend platform, contractors supply their full name and bank card number, and businesses can make payments instantly and directly to their bank cards, using Mastercard or Visa rails. This process avoids SWIFT and intermediary bank fees, and 90% of transfers arrive in 15 seconds at the most.

Taras Paseshnik, global product manager for Transformify, called the partnership “a breath of fresh air for those payees who are not familiar with international bank payments and industry-specific terms like SWIFT, IBAN, and routing number.”

In addition, faster access to payroll can help consumers avoid more costly financial solutions, such as payday loans, PYMNTS reported recently.

Payroll delay is an epidemic for American workers, gig employees in particular. Studies have found that nearly 3 in 4 freelance workers have not received their pay on time, with 20% receiving pay one day late and 16% reporting they are regularly not getting paid for up to two months after they expected.

While freelancers feel the most acute payment delays, salaried employees are no strangers to payroll delays, either – even those who receive their paychecks via a regular biweekly schedule often report financial difficulties when waiting for their next pay period.

Meanwhile, with close to two-thirds of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, many consumers face financial ruin if an unexpected expense happens outside the traditional pay period, creating a deep need for faster payroll solutions.

Payment also recently teamed with Purpl to enable money transfers to Lebanon, combining its global payments ecosystem and purples remittance and cash-out platform

In an interview with PYMNTS earlier this year,  Paysend Co-founder and CEO Ronnie Millar said that a shift in mentality is happening as consumers who once considered sending money a lengthy, complex process now embrace the digital opportunities that FinTech firms offer.

“We’re trying to change that mentality to one that basically says, ‘Sending money is just like sending a WhatsApp message, you’re not doing anything more than that,’” Millar said.

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