Frequently Asked Questions
Below are questions often asked regarding our platform.
1. What is Bridge built by CitiSM?
Bridge built by CitiSM (“Bridge”) is an initiative led by Citi’s Commercial Bank and Citi Ventures. Our mission is to democratize lending by making it easier for small- and medium-sized businesses like yours to access competitive banking products. The platform connects these businesses with a range of banks who compete to provide optimal banking solutions. We aim to offer you the same choices enjoyed by large corporations, so that you can review multiple offers at the same time before making a decision on raising capital or using other banking products.
2. What products do you offer?
Bridge currently facilitates business loans from participating lenders of less than $10 million each. If you’re unsure about what product would suit your business best, select the “I’m not sure” option when answering the question, “What type of loan are you looking for?”
3. Can I use Bridge to search for a personal loan?
No. At the moment, Bridge only facilitates business loans.
1. What kind of lending terms should I expect to receive?
When creating your Request for Proposal, you’ll have the opportunity to indicate your preferred terms as part of your submission, although preferred terms are not guaranteed. After submitting your RFP, lenders then decide whether they are able to offer you terms based on your request. You may receive multiple indications of interest from various lenders, from which you will pick a lender to further discuss your needs. Keep in mind, lender responses are not binding or a firm offer of credit and you must work with your chosen lender through their due diligence process, which can result in modifying or even improving your final terms.
2. Will my business qualify for a loan?
Because each business is unique, a loan offer is not guaranteed. If you do not receive an indication of interest from any lender after submitting an RFP, we can follow up with you to discuss potential next steps.
3. What information do I need to apply?
To help complete your RFP, you’ll need to provide a basic profile of your business (e.g. overview, NAICS code, number of employees, date of incorporation, etc.), as well as financial metrics for the past three years (e.g. revenue, net income, EBITDA, total assets, total liabilities, typical cash balance, etc.).
4. What fees will I be charged for using Bridge?
None! Bridge does not charge borrowers any fees for using the platform. Our goal is to help you connect with the best lender for your needs. Bridge does not determine rates or any other loan terms — that’s up to the lenders.
1. Are you planning to move into my region?
Bridge is testing a few geographies to gain market research before a full nationwide rollout. We plan to begin expanding into new markets in late 2021.
2. Who is actually lending the capital to my business?
Citi does not make loans through Bridge nor does it service any loans you obtain through Bridge. You will borrow directly from your chosen lender after the lender approves you for a loan.
3. Do I need to complete this entire process online?
Not at all—Bridge is intended to facilitate the initial introductions with lenders, but once you’ve connected, you can choose to talk over a call, through Zoom, or even in person (COVID-19 protocols permitting, of course).
4. Is there anyone at Citi I can speak with about my business and its financing options?
Bridge is just a technology platform and does not offer financing, legal or other advice. However, as you connect with lenders, you are free to talk with them about your business and financing options. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out to Bridge’s support team if you have any questions about using Bridge.
5. What type of financial statement should I select on the Financial Details page?
Help bankers understand the type of financials you are using. Selection should represent your method for the most recent year of financial statements:
"Company Prepared" financial statements are prepared by you or someone from your business.
"Business Tax Return" means that you are using your business tax returns that have been filed to the IRS as your financial statements.
"CPA Compiled" financial statements are prepared by your CPA firm without any examination of the financial data you have provided them. The CPA does not provide an opinion or assurance that they have tested or examined any of the financials or internal controls.
"CPA Reviewed" financial statements are prepared by you and include a limited examination by a CPA firm. The CPA performs basic analytical procedures to assess the financials but does not diligence internal controls. The CPA does not provide an opinion and expresses limited assurance about your financial statements.
"Audited" financial statements are prepared by a CPA firm and reflect a very thorough examination of the financial records and information. The CPA analyzes your accounting records and studies the documentation of your transactions. The CPA provides an opinion and expresses assurance about your financial statements.