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Weave teams with Sunbit for healthcare BNPL

Payments Dive

Sunbit Weave DoctorWith Sunbit, Weave can now add BNPL to its other services that help small businesses collect customers’ payments, including text to pay, digital wallets, wireless terminals and credit-card on file.

From early in 2020 and lasting well into last year, the coronavirus kept many patients from visiting their physicians’ and dentists’ offices. Now, rising inflation is forcing consumers to cut back on spending for a wide variety of goods and services, including healthcare and dental care.

That has made it an opportune moment for two fintech companies serving small businesses — Weave Communications and Sunbit — to form a partnership aimed at patients seeking easier and more affordable ways to pay for their health and dental care, said Branden Neish, Weave’s chief product officer.

Founded in 2008, Weave has some 20,000 small businesses using its customer-communications and engagement platform. Meanwhile, Los Angeles-based Sunbit serves 13,000 merchants with its buy-now-pay-later service (BNPL) service.

On Wednesday, Weave announced the new partnership with Sunbit to offer buy now-pay later financing services that potentially provide an approval of payments in about 30 seconds through Transportation Alliance Bank, said Tal Riesenfeld, a co-founder of Sunbit and its head of sales. With Sunbit, Weave can now add BNPL to its other services that help small businesses collect customers’ payments, including text to pay, digital wallets, wireless terminals and credit-card on file.

When seeking a partner that could assist its small business clients in accepting payments through installment options, Weave sought a fast-approval process and low-costs for consumers, Neish said. Sunbit’s system approves BNPL applications for about 90% of all applicants, and customers can choose from among three options based on the length of term, Riesenfeld said. The lowest-cost options require the highest payments over the shortest period of time.

In November 2021, Lehi, Utah-based Weave became a publicly-traded company, raising $110 million in an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. In the first week of May, Weave reported first-quarter revenue of $33.3 million, an increase of 30% over the $25.7 million it reported in the year-earlier quarter. Its loss for the quarter widened to $13.8 million from $9.5 million.

Neish is bullish on the advantages Weave will get from its new partnership with Sunbit. “We’ve all gone through the process of filling out endless forms at the doctor’s office,” he said. Instead of going through multiple loan-application pages, Weave customers wanting to buy now and pay later can instead tap a few keys on a mobile phone.

“To get a relatively quick and straightforward approval within 30 seconds, that’s a compelling difference versus from what we’re used to,” Neish added.

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