ConnectOne makes bold digital play with deal for online loan exchange

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ConnectOne Bancorp in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., has agreed to buy the online loan exchange BoeFly.

BoeFly, founded in 2010 and based in New York, specializes in connecting franchisors, small-business owners, lenders and loan brokers.

The $5.5 billion-asset ConnectOne did not disclose the price of the deal, which is expected to close in the second quarter.

BoeFly will operate as a ConnectOne division with Michael Rozman, the exchange’s CEO, serving as its president.

BoeFly’s platform has supported more than $5 billion of financing transactions. It also generates revenue through referral fees and subscription fees from a network of lenders, franchisors, loan brokers and borrowers.

"BoeFly is built on a mission of offering frictionless, efficient solutions for small to midsized businesses," Frank Sorrentino, ConnectOne's chairman and CEO, said in the release.

“This partnership represents a unique opportunity to leverage the digital foundation we have built,” Sorrentino added. “The transaction provides ConnectOne an avenue to expand and diversify noninterest income, while also enhancing our recently established SBA line of business.”

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