— Marty Zwilling, Founder and CEO
Startup Professionals, Inc.
I definitely enjoyed your book! Even though I fancied myself somewhat of an
expert on financing alternatives for entrepreneurs and startups, I learned that
bank loans should always be seriously considered as an early source of startup
funding, as well as a later one. I also enjoyed the specific recommendations
on how to improve the application odds, and how startup finances need to be
managed during the loan cycle to keep you out of trouble. This book should be
required reading for every entrepreneur! It is definitely an insider’s guide.
— Steve Ciesinski, Private Investor and Lecturer at Stanford
Graduate School of Business
Alan Stewart’s new book, Approved, hits the mark explaining in civilian,
easy-to-understand style the seemingly complicated methodology of applying
for and getting a loan approved for a small business owner. Stewart’s format
is quite creative—he introduces imaginary characters, who represent owners,
consultants, CFOs, bank executives, and so on, and have them play their roles
perfectly in the loan application process. To add even more to the realistic scenes,
Stewart makes clever use of actual dialog from the characters throughout. The
result is that many banking terms and phrases are quite naturally explained
in the exchanges between the characters. The book flows effortlessly delivering
an amazing number of valuable tips while the loan processing paperwork
and approvals are explained. If a book exists on the mind-numbing subject of
bank loans that is hard to put down, Stewart’s Approved is it! A fun, easyto-read but informative read for new entrepreneurs as well as seasoned small
— Lary Kirchenbauer, CEO and Founder
As you know, cash is king. It’s the fuel required by almost every business seeking
to build upon its early achievements. You’re lucky you’ve chosen this book because
you’re getting the “inside scoop” from the trenches about how to obtain a bank
loan. Alan is the real deal. He is a deeply experienced financial executive who
has worked very hard to share his broad entrepreneurial experience to help small
business owners gain access to capital. His book not only spells out the exact steps
required to raise capital, but he also shares with you the insights that only a
professional financial executive can provide. This book is required reading for
entrepreneurs and small business owners who want to grow their business.
— Henry Evans, Founder, Get Clear Marketing, Inc.
Author, #1 Best Seller, The Hour A Day Entrepreneur
What a fantastic resource for helping business owners navigate through the
maze of bank lending! Alan does a thorough job explaining from an “Insider’s
Perspective” what really goes on behind the scenes with bank financing. The
infographics make it easy for even new business owners to understand the
entire process. If you now have or ever will need to get a bank loan, read this
FIRST. I will be recommending this to my own small business clients.
— Emily Brayfield, SVP and Sr. Relationship Manager
San Diego Corporate Banking, Umpqua Bank
It’s fantastic how you were able to articulate and build a story around the
loan application process in such a simple way. The infographics/charts are
EXCELLENT! I imagine them being posted on cubicle walls and used for
quick reference. I feel that this book is not only about getting a loan approved,
but is a great quick finance lesson for small business owners. Bankers who
haven’t been through a credit training program (or just need a refresher) could
learn a lot from this book.
— Bob Jondall, SVP & Regional Manager, Torrey Pines Bank—
Mr. Stewart is an expert and invaluable resource for helping business owners
understand and secure the most cost effective financing to help grow their
businesses. Approved! is an easy to follow guide for anyone who wants a detailed
realistic view and understanding of the loan process with specific examples and
charts. Having been a banker for 30 years, I have seen first-hand how business
owners can significantly increase their success for getting the best bank financing
by following Mr. Stewart’s advice and steps. Mr. Stewart’s credentials are
extensive, but at the top of the list is probably his years of real-life experience as
a top CFO in San Diego planning and negotiating bank financing. Having
banked Mr. Stewart’s company for the last eight years, I can say he truly knows
what he is talking about. Bottom line: a must read for anyone in business that
wants to better understand the loan process. There is no other book like it.
— Bill VanDeWeghe, President/CEO
Approved! is an excellent guide for first time borrowers and experienced
business people looking for ways to improve or change a banking relationship.
It is filled with practical and insightful tips based on the author’s firsthand
experience dealing with banking and financing relationships at all levels. A
terrific resource for business leaders to refer to when dealing with the application
process, annual reviews, and changes in their business needs.
— David Inmon, CEO.
— David Inmon, CEO, Redhorse Corporation
Alan Stewart has truly written an “insiders guide” to getting a bank loan. As
CEO of a company that has had many bank loans with various banks, I found
the book and it’s detailed information incredibly helpful. I only wish that I had
read this book before applying for some of my loans in the past.
The many infographics in the book are not only entertaining, but packed
with valuable information. Unlike most boring textbooks that are laborious
to read, Alan uses characters and real-life case studies to walk you through the
entire lending process so the book is actually an enjoyable read.
If you ever think you might need a bank loan—or you just want to become
more knowledgeable about the process—I highly recommend that you add this
to your required reading list. I know that I’ll be keeping it on my bookshelf as
a ready reference for the future.
— Mark Sanders, co-founder and principal
R3 Strategic Support Group
Approved! An Insider’s Guide to Getting Your Bank Loan Approved
is an entertaining guide packed with information for CEOs, CFOs and
other executives involved in obtaining a business loan. It literally walks you
through all the steps to maximize your possibility of loan approval, but also
provides insight into what the bankers are thinking, studying and scrutinizing
throughout the entire process.
I highly recommend this book to anyone desiring to learn more about how
a bank underwrites a loan and ways that a company executive can improve
their chances of obtaining the loan.
Approved! even covers sensitive items that no one ever talks about, such
as what to do if you violate a bank covenant and how to deal with personal
guarantees. No other resource does this.
This book is required reading for every executive needing to obtain and then
comply with a bank loan for their business. Five stars!
— Kenji (Ken) Funahashi, Partner
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
Mr. Stewart’s book is a must read for any small business owner and entrepreneur
who is examining financing options. This book provides a comprehensive and
user-friendly overview of the bank loan process from start to finish and serves
as a helpful desk reference for executives at all levels.
— President & CEO, F&A International Consulting Group
The Miller Group
Alan Stewart has written a MUST read for all entrepreneurs, company
owners, and CFOs of small and medium size companies from pre-revenue to
$100M. His easy-to-read style and outstanding graphics make this the go-to
book for any university business school that claims it has an entrepreneurship
slant. Finally, someone has written a finance book we all can understand and
benefit by reading.
— Steve DeLong, Senior Vice President & Manager
California Bank & Trust
Approved! is a simple, clear, concise but thorough guide for choosing and
maintaining not only the appropriate credit needs for one’s organization but also
choosing and maintaining the bank and bank relationship to provide these needs.
— Casey Hopkins, SBA Loan Officer
Alan Stewart provides one of the most accurate depictions of the loan process
and breaks it down through easy-to-follow illustrations for a borrower at any
level to understand.
— Thor J. Eakes
CPA, CEO of Eakes & Company, CPA’s
“I really enjoyed reading Approved! An Insider’s Guide to Getting Your
Bank Loan Approved. The book was very informative and added a lot
of credible insight into what goes on at a bank during the loan review and
I’ve run my CPA firm for over 25 years and can honestly say that this
book would have helped many of my clients. I will be recommending it to
anyone looking to obtain or learn about bank loans. Not only does Approved!
address the steps that a bank must take to underwrite a loan, but the book also
gives credible insight into the mind (and concerns) of an entrepreneur seeking
funding. Definitely a must read.