Amazon reportedly in talks with Goldman Sachs to offer loans to merchants

The loans would reportedly be offered through an existing loan platform.

Steven Musil Night Editor / News
Steven Musil is the night news editor at CNET News. He's been hooked on tech since learning BASIC in the late '70s. When not cleaning up after his daughter and son, Steven can be found pedaling around the San Francisco Bay Area. Before joining CNET in 2000, Steven spent 10 years at various Bay Area newspapers.
Expertise I have more than 30 years' experience in journalism in the heart of the Silicon Valley.
Steven Musil

Amazon is reportedly in talks with Goldman Sachs to offer loans to the internet retailer's merchants.

Declan McCullagh/CNET

Amazon is reportedly in discussions with Goldman Sachs about establishing a partnership in which the investment bank would offer small business loans to merchants on the internet retailer's platform. The loans would be offered directly to Amazon merchants through the e-commerce giant's existing loan platform, the Financial Times and CNBC reported Monday, citing an unidentified source described as familiar with the plan.

Amazon declined to comment on reports about talks with Goldman but said that lending was "part of the services, tools, programs and infrastructure we provide to our selling partners, mostly small and medium-sized businesses, who account for more than half of everything sold in Amazon's stores."

The project could launch as soon as March, a source told the Financial Times.

If the deal closes, it would be the second partnership Goldman has struck with a tech giant to be a provider of bank regulated services. Last year, Apple teamed up with Goldman and Mastercard to release the Apple Card.

In 2011, Amazon began offering short-term loans to small- and medium-sized businesses operating on its platform. Loans in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $750,000 are offered on an invitation basis for up to 12 months.

Goldman also offers consumer loans in the US through its online bank Marcus. During its investor day last week, Goldman outlined a future in which it would become a "banking-as-a-service" provider for the business world.

Goldman didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.