Crestmark Reviews - Financial Lender Pros & Cons
Founded in Michigan in October 1996 with the goal of providing financial support to small to medium businesses, Crestmark now has seven offices across the country. In just the first half of October 2021, they lent $22.7 million to 76 businesses.
Crestmark in a nutshell
Crestmark has 287+ employees in five states across the US, including Michigan, Florida, California, Louisiana, and Tennessee, and has sales representation across the country.
Created by entrepreneurs and recently acquired by MetaBank in 2018, Crestmark has a large capacity for direct lending, allowing them to maintain their commitment to growing small and medium-sized businesses. The company prides itself on its vast niche market knowledge and personalized, flexible approach in helping businesses that would otherwise struggle to access lending options.
“Crestmark – We help.”
Crestmark aims to be there for small to medium businesses that need money now. The purpose of the financing they provide may be for long-term growth, capital acquisition, or equipment purchases. It may be used to serve immediate needs such as making payroll or getting through a difficult patch. Management is highly committed to adapting their provision to the client’s specific needs, as well as assessing the need and providing a quick response.
Crestmark offers a range of lending options to suit different business needs. These include accounts receivable financing, asset-based lending, factoring, SBA lending, business lines of credit, and term loans. Crestmark has dedicated teams that specialize in different niche markets, including the healthcare and energy sectors, both of which have significant growth predicted in the near future.
In addition to their financial support, Crestmark offers risk management solutions, credit checks on potential customers, and online management of invoices to keep customers easily up to date through an online portal.
Crestmark helps companies with their front and back office needs. Clients can outsource their customer support needs to Crestmark and focus on growing and running their business, without getting bogged down by administrative tasks. Crestmark provides companies with working capital and also helps with many more aspects of running the business, such as:
- Restructuring and refinancing
- Expansion, acquisition, and growth
- Getting supplier discounts through purchase of larger quantities, quicker payment, or better payment terms
- MetaBank takeover provides extensive funding resources
- Personalized and flexible approach
- Quick response times
- Niche market knowledge
- Initial funding takes 5-15 days
- Unclear if offer non-recourse factoring
- No online payment option - payments must be sent to a Crestmark P.O. Box
Crestmark at a glance
|Types of loans||Accounts receivable, asset-based, factoring, SBA lending, business lines of credit, term loans|
|Loan sizes||From $500 to $10 million for working capital|
|Advance rates||From 70-95%|
|In-person locations||Louisiana, Michigan, California, Florida, Tennessee|
|Approach||Personalized, flexible, helpful|
How does Crestmark rate?
5 out of 5 stars
- Serves businesses refused by other lending institutions
- Fees are personalized, depending on individual client and loan type
4.5 out of 5 stars
- Crestmark is upfront with about costs, terms, and other loan information
- Informative site educates consumers
4 out of 5 stars
- Payment option limited to mailing in to a P.O. Box
- Online tools such as the assetCONNECT portal and equipment lease payment calculator make it easy to estimate costs and manage your account
- Diverse range of industries served. If you don’t see your product need listed, Crestmark will try to get it for you
5 out of 5 stars
- BBB rating of A+
- Reviews we found were overall very positive
Crestmark’s Mission – in their own words:
We strive to add value to small-and medium-sized businesses by providing innovative financial solutions to niche markets. Our success is derived exclusively from the value and satisfaction we provide to our stakeholders – including our clients, employees, shareholders, referral sources, regulators, and the industries and communities we serve. We do our best to foster an atmosphere of creativity, flexibility, and integrity in all that we are – and all that we do.
Crestmark is a direct lender, offering quick responses to loan applications. Applicants can fill in a simple form on the company’s website, entering their contact information and some basic information about their company such as their average monthly sales and their average accounts receivable balance. Lending options exist in the following categories:
Asset-based lending services
Using Crestmark’s trademark flexible approach, they tailor their service to what’s right for the client. This enables greater leverage and a more flexible contract. The credit Crestmark provides is dependent upon potential customers’ accounts receivable, inventory, and/or assets.
In this way, Crestmark offers clients a resource that doesn’t require them to give up highly valued equity and has the potential to provide them with funds to run their company. This can include anything from purchasing supplies to paying salaries and can be used to get the company through a difficult patch or a growth phase.
A/R financing – accounts receivable financing
Crestmark manages its customers’ invoicing of clients and immediately credits them with 90% of the invoice amount, even when a client has not yet paid their bill. They go after the client for payment, and when they pay, they give the customer the remaining ten percent, minus their administration fee. This allows the customer to avoid ever having to worry about payroll and allows them to have the funds immediately available for their business needs such as purchasing stock, following up on a good deal, and more.
Along the same lines as accounts receivable financing, in factoring, the customer’s accounts receivable are purchased, and the funds are given to the customer, minus their fee. Clearly, this option depends on the credit stability of the customer’s clients. Crestmark’s website doesn’t clearly state whether this includes non-recourse factoring.
SBA loans and financing
As an SBA-registered lender, Crestmark can offer funds of up to $5,000,000, giving a helpful cash injection to customer businesses. SBA funds are usually provided for company purchasing, company development, or reorganization.
Business line of credit
The above-mentioned accounts receivable management and purchase (factoring) are both ways of raising a business line of credit. Another way is through the customer’s inventory. The line of credit is opened with a financial ceiling, allowing a business to borrow funds when they need to. This type of loan has built-in flexibility for variable needs.
Term loans are designed for a short-term financial need, for example, for purchasing a new piece of equipment. The equipment then becomes the security for the loan.
Crestmark prides itself on its expertise in niche markets. This includes, but is by no means limited to equipment leasing, healthcare financing, and energy financing. A full list of the industries served is stated below, and details of each one are available on the company’s website.
Crestmark offers leasing support from start to finish – finding the equipment, managing the lease, and arranging to dispose of, buy, or recycle the equipment.
Crestmark will help a customer lease the equipment their company needs and can include all the associated costs in the lease price, such as installation, delivery, maintenance, and more. They can also create different leasing options for the customer to choose from. In addition, the customer can bundle varied equipment types into one single lease.
Customers can manage all of their equipment leases through Crestmark online. All the relevant details are recorded on the company’s proprietary portal, called assetCONNECT. . The portal also provides an option to link the company’s own management system with Crestmark’s. Users can have varied access, depending on their level of responsibility. It also allows the customer to record changes, for instance, if the equipment has been moved to a different location. The portal can also be used to generate reports for different stages of the lease.
Crestmark offers expertise within the healthcare field, especially important considering that the healthcare industry in the US is predicted to grow significantly as the US population ages. Crestmark understands that receiving payment for services offered is complex, particularly where the insurance industry is involved. They therefore offer loans for working capital as well as for buying needed equipment. Importantly, they are also familiar with HIPAA compliance issues. Crestmark Healthcare Financial Services serves physician practices, regional hospitals, skilled nursing and medical staff, and more. In addition to financing different types of equipment, Crestmark offers asset-based lending and ledgered lines of credit.
Crestmark has spent the last half a decade focusing on the needs of the energy industry, creating financial solutions especially for them. Wanting to promote innovation in this area, their energy team has the ability to assess the market and a potential investment with expertise. They offer a variety of sale-leaseback solutions and work with customers to find the right USDA REAP solutions for them. Lastly, their vendor lease options are characteristic of Crestmark in offering flexible payment options and access to their online tracking system, among other options. In their own words, “As you innovate alternative power sources, let Crestmark innovate your funding.”
Crestmark offers support to Distributors, Manufacturers, and Service Industries. Crestmark was founded in the Midwest, so understandably, they got started by helping businesses in the manufacturing, service, and transportation industries around them. They continue to do so today. Over the years, they have expanded their services to include specialization in apparel, footwear, home furnishings, energy, petrochemical, and equipment leasing. This was accomplished through acquiring companies that specialized in these areas, allowing Crestmark to become an expert provider in each specific industry.
Industries that Crestmark has helped:
- Medical Receivables
- Alternative Energy
- Automotive Suppliers
- Apparel and Footwear
- Home Furnishings
- Government Receivables
- Oil and Gas Well Services
- Importers / Exporters
- Furniture Manufacturers
- Insurance Agencies
- Hospitality / Hotels
- Aggregate Suppliers
- Book Publishers
- Communications Installers
- Commercial Door Service/Repair
- Metal Fabricators
- Store Display Manufacturers
- Promotional Material Marketing Companies
- Food Manufacturing/Distribution
Crestmark has many affiliations and partners nationwide. They offer incentives to referral partners, and their website lists associations to which their staff belongs.
Crestmark promotes the use of its online tool, the assetCONNECT portal, which makes the equipment financing process simpler from start to finish. Different loan types have different online support available. For example, to apply for a loan from Crestmark Vendor Finance of up to $250,000, you can use the company’s online application tool. Once awarded, most loans can be tracked online, which often allows the customer to link to its business’s management system, track loan and equipment changes, and generate personalized reports in relevant cases.
The Equipment Lease Payment Calculator makes it simple for Crestmark customers to get a glimpse of their estimated payments. While the calculator is only for illustrative purposes and actual numbers will depend on customers’ credit, it can help prospective customers have a general idea of their financing options. Just enter the mount to finance, slide the tab to your selected term length between 24 and 60 months, and you’ll see what your monthly payments could look like.
In addition to its online tools, Crestmark’s website features several years’ worth of blog posts that are informative to those looking to learn more about equipment financing. Educating the consumer through these informative articles is another service that Crestmark provides. Blog posts can be browsed by date or category, and cover topics such as equipment leasing, industry financing, small business loans, accounts receivable financing, and more.
Company contact details
What customers are saying
The bottom line
Crestmark is a reliable, direct lender that has been in business since 1996. The company has met the needs of small and medium-sized businesses through challenges such as financial crises and COVID, and continues to serve its vast client base in any way it can. Acquired by MetaBank in 2018, Crestmark has the financial resources to help businesses on a large scale. Crestmark’s personalized and flexible approach helps businesses whether they are in a growth phase or in a crisis, and everything in between, making them a reliable partner to businesses, lenders, and suppliers alike. Crestmark has a wide range of lending options to choose from and has many subcategories staffed by specialists with experience in niche markets.