A financial visionary leading the evolution of an age-old industry to make sure no one gets left behind.
When John Kennedy said, “I'm interested in two things. I'm interested in truth, and I'm interested in fairness,” he could not have imagined that in years to come it would be so germane to the business world, especially finance. Yet, amid an industry that notoriously favors the giants, Michael Padova has wholeheartedly embraced the ideology and pledged to liberate small businesses and entrepreneurs from the chains of obscurity and empower them. From obliterating the constraints of an archaic system to fusing conventional banking norms with alternative lending options, Michael is a beacon of hope in uncertain times—defending the future of small business in America.
The very definition of a financial prodigy, Michael entered the field at just 18 years old and built an enviable career founded on specialization in risk mitigation, cash-flow analysis, and credit/debt management. His entrepreneurial drive took him from a young financial advisor on Wall Street to institutional trading to roles as a fund manager before introducing access to alternative debt markets and founding a credit consultancy. Along the way, he raised over $160 million in venture capital and assisted in three complete corporate restructures and reorganizations that all went public. Today, as a leader in the field with over a decade of experience and the owner of Creddited+, he’s been especially focused on the evolution of the debt and equity capital markets, as well as traditional banking, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and on shaping future opportunities for entrepreneurs and small businesses. “My heart and soul are vested in using my experiences and expertise to help people save their business, attain their financial goals, and arm them with the tools to thrive!” Michael shares.
Michael co-founded Creddited+ in 2019 initially as a private hedge fund focused on alternative financing. He was tasked to bring diversification to the organization, using the extensive experience he had acquired from a career of working with C-suite executives and mid-sized companies and as the former owner of his previous firm, Skybridge Solution. Then, as Michael shares, “COVID changed everything. Small businesses were struggling to survive, and I could not sit idly by. I quickly pivoted and committed myself and the company to saving them.”
And that is precisely what Creddited+ has done by providing hundreds of millions in traditional, revolving credit facilities, or asset-based capital to thousands of people. The largest firm of its kind in the U.S., it is one of only a few to offer same-day preapprovals and funding in as little as three days. With a staff that has years of credit counseling experience and a foundation built on Wall Street pedigree, they’re not only providing a suite of reliable financial services, but they’re taking their clients from average to savvy in the process. While the global shutdown has passed, entrepreneurs and small business owners are now facing new challenges of supply chain issues, inflation, and fluctuating COVID mitigation regulations that continue to threaten their livelihoods or stimy their growth. And Michael and his team are helping them every step of the way.
We spoke with Michael to learn more about Creddited+ and the profound impact it’s had in the small business lending arena.
Michael, tell us about Creddited+ and the CREDDnet platform.
Creddited+ was designed to connect business owners with a network of credit facilities, which allowed them to secure financial products, such as lines of credit. It was, in essence, a “super broker” because it facilitated approvals based on market, industry, cash flow, credit, and location of the business. Through CREDDnet, sales professionals and loan officers, from novices to seasoned experts, and even large firms, will be able to open their own brokerage with the full resources and power of Creddited+ behind them. They will be branded under CREDDnet, but independent and with everything they need, such as backend underwriting, financials and credit assessments, and access to our network of contacts, affiliates, and specialists. As an approved CREDDnet vendor, they can offer loans, track the loan status, generate reports for credit intervention and solutions, receive training on funding regulations, and sales training.
What compelled you to start Creddited+?
Just prior to COVID, a partner of mine, who was familiar with my consultancy firm, Skybridge Solution, believed I could help address the need for venture capital in markets where it was not readily available. My idea was a simple one—reestablish access to traditional banking for business owners. When the pandemic hit, many institutions stopped lending and clients were left hanging in the balance. I was particularly concerned about small businesses, which make up over 76% of the U.S. economy. I began helping them secure funds through SBA lenders and used credit advances to help people get COVID stimulus funds. From there, I acquired the company and changed the direction of Creddited+ to what it is now.
Where did the idea for CREDDnet come from?
I was seeing a ripple effect throughout the financial industry because of COVID. So many brokerages are limited by their lack of knowledge of available resources, and I knew there needed to be a scalable system where larger brokerages could assist smaller ones. A mentor once told me, “One day you’re going to be faced with a big problem, and you’re going to fix it.” I’ve solved many problems for clients over my career, but through the problems that COVID presented, I realized that this was the moment that my mentor was talking about those many years ago, and it became my mission.
Are you seeing greater demand for financing from entrepreneurs and small businesses owners as a result of COVID?
We’re seeing greater demand across the board, from entrepreneurs, small businesses, broker shops, and loan officers. Default rates have skyrocketed, low-risk industries became high risk, and good credit became bad credit in the blink of an eye. Because of this, less funding is available through traditional banks. These people need funding faster, more frequently, with more flexible repayment terms and funding options—and they’re relying on us to deliver.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I went through turbulent times in business and as a young entrepreneur. I’m so passionate about what I do, and that I’m able to help so many others is like a dream come true for me. I love knowing that we have a new business or a veteran business owner that will have a newfound opportunity or learn something new that will lead them down the path from “average” to the “savvy.”
Michael holds Series 7, 63, and 62 licenses and is a member of the NACM, CFDD, and NACSO.
CEO and Co-Founder, Creddited+
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