Banking as a service

Quick take: Piermont Bank eyes embedded business with Unit partnership

  • Piermont Bank announced a new partnership with Unit to expand its product capabilities.
  • The bank says it has an active waitlist of fintechs and it expects to onboard more clients in 2022.

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Quick take: Piermont Bank eyes embedded business with Unit partnership

Piermont Bank, a New York-based digital commercial bank, has announced a new partnership with Unit, a banking as a service provider, to expand its offering and add product capabilities that enable fintechs to embed more banking products.

A federally chartered financial institution, Piermont was set up in 2019 with a focus on fintech. Over the years, it has become a partner for fintech firms looking to offer banking capabilities.

Unit’s technology enables fintechs and non-bank firms to build and launch bank accounts, cards, payments, and lending products. With Unit, Piermont can sit behind these services for clients, as the institution provides core banking services like compliance, deposit capability, and lending. By expanding its platform offerings, Piermont can help clients determine the right API partner for their use case, maturity stage, and product needs.

“As the market evolves, each technology platform will continue developing different capabilities, which will allow us to offer different integration models and different products with each,” a spokesperson for Piermont told Tearsheet. “With Unit, as an example, we are working on an iteration of our credit products for business end-users. Over time, through our multi-platform approach, we will be able to serve more fintechs and brands looking to embed financial products in various ways.” 

Today, Piermont markets its speed to launch for fintechs. In this context, the move to enter the non-bank embedded finance market appears rather logical. The firm sees it as a step forward in building out its vision of a multi-platform, multi-integration model.

“We see tremendous opportunity in the embedded finance space. Estimates point to a four-fold increase in embedded finance revenues in the next decade,” a spokesperson said. 

As a digital-first bank, Piermont sees itself well suited to power embedded services for fintechs. That was a part of the founder’s vision. 

“Big banks take that wholesale approach [serving larger businesses] and the small banks don’t have the product sophistication. So when we decided to build Piermont, we identified that market need,” Piermont Bank founder Wendy Cai-Lee told us in an interview. “Let’s make sure we build the products and services really addressing that market voice, and figure out how to be more tech-driven, tech-enabled, and aligned with all the shifts that are taking place.”

“So those were the two driving factors in building Piermont.”

After the first iteration of BaaS, where the focus was almost exclusively on deposit and payment products, Piermont moved into credit as the next big opportunity. This culminated in the bank’s recent product, a credit platform for fintechs, called BancFi — which was named Best New Product (For Platforms) at Tearsheet’s Embedded Awards last year. The service provides a suite of credit products including working capital, warehouse lines, and deposit-backed lines of credit for fintechs at different stages of growth.

According to the bank’s spokesperson, they have an active waitlist of fintechs looking for banking solutions and expect to onboard significantly more clients in 2022.

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