Four years ago, when Camino Financial still operated out of an apartment at Harvard Business School, we had a bold vision to fund the dreams of millions of small businesses throughout the United States. Our vision came from experiencing our mother struggle to scale her restaurant chain and access affordable capital. We vowed to never leave a business behind. Unfortunately, in the United States, most businesses that are left behind tend to be minority-owned. Where banks see RISK, we see OPPORTUNITY. Our journey to raise the funding to lend to minority-owned businesses started with over 100 rejections. Some really smart investors said building a national lending platform for minority-owned businesses was IMPOSSIBLE. They told us: “the market simply is not ready for a tech solution and Camino will not scale to become valued above $1 billion.”
We are proud to announce we have taken another step towards proving over 100 investors wrong.
When they say impossible, we say TODO ES POSIBLE!!! (Anything is Possible)
Camino Financial is proud to announce the geographic expansion of its loan program to businesses across the United States. Different than other lenders, we have remained focused on financing minority-owned businesses who have traditionally been sidelined by banks. And guess what? Our market is ready for technology. We have built tech that allows businesses to seamlessly apply and get funded from the convenience of their smartphone. No branch visits or physical documentation necessary!
Despite the lack of capital, our team was bold, audacious, and determined to knock-down the barriers impeding minority entrepreneurs from realizing their American Dream. We’ve recruited a best-in-class team that bleeds and sweats to deliver value to every business owner who applies for a loan. People like Marisol Loza, Jesse Machorro, and Ali Surti; young leaders who’ve witnessed through life experiences the struggles of small business owners. People who work through midnight on weekdays and weekends to drive change and accomplish our mission of “No Business Left Behind”.
Despite the lack of capital, our team was bold, audacious, and determined to knock-down the barriers impeding minority entrepreneurs from realizing their American Dream.
Thanks to our team’s A-grade execution and the strong repayment behavior of our members, we have demonstrated to our investors – and the world – that minority-owned businesses can play a vital role in the U.S. economy and create millions of jobs! We proved that entrepreneurs from low to moderate income communities not only deserve a chance, but they are a thriving force in our economy. Our partners and investors have confided in us to expand nationally in an effort to earn positive investment returns and, most importantly, help our members build wealth in their communities.
One of the members who opened our path to expansion is Carlos Trelles, CEO of Axon Marketing & Communications. Two years ago, Carlos could not get a business loan until he came across Camino Financial. Carlos received his first business loan from Camino Financial and doubled the size of his business after investing in marketing. Our financial partnership transformed Carlos’ business growth trajectory and drove positive impact in his community.
Carlos Trelles is not the only one. We have had the privilege of playing a part in hundreds of stories in which ambitious minority entrepreneurs like Carlos have taken calculated risks to grow their businesses with our capital. Together with our members, we have created a new exemplary model in the lending sphere. We have changed the perspective of investors who couldn’t visualize the success of our mission.
Today, Camino Financial continues being a proud minority-owned business lending to people in the same community. Today, we are a national lender!
And we’re not stopping here! We are determined to take our motto, “No Business Left Behind”, to a higher level. Our goal is to scale our lending and services to 50,000 small businesses in the next 5 years.
We are determined to take our motto, “No Business Left Behind”, to a higher level.
By listening to the needs and demands of our growing members, we’ve rolled out of the following tech features and content:
- Easy and quick online application with instant prequalification for loans up to $400,000
- Member account portal to view loan balances, payment history, and request more capital
- Online tools, like the business loan calculator, to help businesses calculate the cost and monthly payments of our loans
- Over 300 pieces of business content including our Pregúntanos show to help businesses qualify for a loan and grow
Thanks to the trust and the endless work ethic of our members, we know we will make it together. Our camino has just begun.
Sean & Kenny Salas, Co-Founders of Camino Financial