SME lending

Make effective lending decisions based on customer spending patterns and distribute loan proceeds with speed.

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Create a lending service that gives businesses what they want

Access to cash is key when running a business. However, if a business needs a loan, finding ways to borrow that won’t cripple them with fees and charges, or take weeks and months to secure, can be critical to both survival and success.

At the same time, building the ability to put those loans in the hands of the businesses that need to use them to buy materials or services in a secure and flexible way can be very challenging.

Marqeta helps you build a lending solution – now

With our innovative modern card issuing platform, you can create a lending service with rapid decision-making, manage risks and provide physical or virtual cards to the businesses that need money.

Virtual cards allow prospective lenders to fund borrowers instantly on approval and provide them with a physical card to keep them top of wallet, and top of mind for future spend and renewals. Just-in-Time Funding™ means that the funds are only provided at the point-of-sale, reducing risks and minimising tied-up capital.

Plus, rich transaction data helps lenders gain key insights into customer spending patterns, leaving them better equipped to make important lending decisions and drive targeted marketing and loyalty strategies, while also reducing exposure to bad debt.

Real world: SME lending

Lending on a card for better control and insight

The Lender

Customer applies for loan

The process is typically online and often agreed in minutes.

Notification of spend

The lender receives spend notifications, allowing them to extend additional credit lines to the borrower in a timely manner if needed.

Marqeta platform

Loan instantly issued on a virtual card

Physical cards can be issued later to carry branding and stay top of wallet. The lender earns additional revenue through interchange.

Spend evaluated

A complex set of spend controls can be customised to minimise fraud. The lender is able to authorise spend at merchant level, thus reducing the likelihood of the loan being misused.

Funds released

Just-in-Time (JIT) Funding releases funds to the card on approval and in real time to complete the transaction. This optimises the loan experience as funds are only accessed at this point and interest begins to be charged.


The loan is utilised

The lender has visibility of where the loan is spent through Marqeta data insights. Purchases are made wherever Visa and Mastercard are accepted.

Auth requested

Marqeta’s platform is contacted by the appropriate network for authorisation.

Transaction completed

Authorisation is successful and the payment is confirmed.

“Marqeta’s open APIs enabled us to build a world-class issuing platform, which we just wouldn’t have been able to do without building their tech stack on ours.”


Watch customer testimonial
Read case study

Damian Brychcy
COO, Capital on Tap

Key benefits for small business lending

Instant issuance of virtual cards

Fund loans within minutes of the borrower’s approval.

Physical cards

Easily issue physical cards to drive stickiness and keep the brand top of wallet and top of mind for the borrower.

Dynamic spend controls

Control spend by only authorising a borrower’s transactions with specific merchants/merchant categories or by using time controls such as date, start or end time.

JIT (Just-in-Time) Funding™

Manage fraud by authorising transactions in real time (e.g. for two subsequent transactions with equal value) and release funds only when you need to in order to optimise cash flow.


Enable real time communications with the borrower (e.g. when a borrower makes a purchase, the lender sees the transaction and can offer the borrower additional capital).

Data insights

Derive rich insights into customer spend to offer targeted loans or funding options, grow loyalty and/or identify and onboard popular merchants to grow a portfolio.

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