This year is proving to be a kinder one so far for Long Island companies in the market for venture-capital funds. Two companies received funding in the first quarter, compared with just one for all of last year, according to a quarterly survey.

FatWire Corp., a Mineola software developer, received $8.1 million. Bridge Capital Solutions Corp., a Hauppauge company that provides commercial check cashing, snagged $4 million.

Bridge Capital Solutions will also use the funding to expand, said Michael Casalini, president. It plans to increase its staff to 12 employees from eight in the next 15 to 16 months, Casalini said. He said the business, which cashes checks for small businesses to provide immediate financing, has been growing 15 percent to 20 percent a year. But it didn’t have the capital to keep up.

Newsday, May 12, 2010

american banker

After a decade of massive consolidation, aggressive expansion into alternative markets and a government bailout of historic proportions, we were left with two grim statistics at the end of 2009. First, U.S. banks posted their sharpest decline in lending since 1942. Second, banks generated an estimated $20 billion from overdraft fees on debit transactions and another $12 billion in overdraft fees on checks.

In 2006, I founded a firm called Bridge Capital Solutions, the first licensed commercial check-cashing business in New York State. For a 3% fee, we cash checks made payable to a business. No five-day processing period, no overdraft allowances, no securitization.

We’ve seen trickle-down effects, too. By injecting more liquidity into the small-business microeconomy of our corner of New York, we’ve seen vendors start to offer discounts for early payment as well as steadier employment rates among firms that were losing talent to erratic cash flow.

Michael Casalini in American Banker, April 4, 2010


Michael Casalini has the distinction of being co-owner of the first commercial check-cashing business to be licensed by New York State. And his Hauppauge-based company, Bridge Capital Solutions, is the only commercial check-casher on the Island.

His unique contribution to Long Island’s business community? His company immediately cashes checks that companies receive, relieving them of having to wait days for checks to clear at local banks. Bridge Capital charges a 3 percent fee for its services.

Newsday, Feb 1, 2010


A local financing firm has nabbed a $4 million injection of private funding at a time when investments in local companies are all but obsolete.

Bridge Capital Solutions in Hauppauge, a 4-year-old commercial check-cashing firm, scored the investment from Praesidian Capital in New York City and owner Michael Casalini said the local company has big plans for the much-needed funds.

Casalini said his customers, which are companies with less than $5 million in annual revenue, need money immediately and can’t wait even one day for a check to clear from the banks. He added his business can boost profitability at small companies by anywhere from 7 percent to 20 percent by eliminating potential overdraft fees if funds are needed before a check clears and helping companies more concretely plan and manage cash flow.

Long Island Business News, Jan 22, 2010


A Hauppauge-based check-cashing shop is getting a big lift from local construction companies that need fast money to pay invoices and employees. Bridge Capital Solutions said many builders are so strapped that they can’t afford to wait for checks to clear at local banks.

In 2007, when the credit crunch and housing market woes first surfaced, the Bridge Capital’s income consistently grew 20 percent each month, Casalini said. That growth has slowed a little as the economy worsened, because this year the checks being cashed are smaller in size. However, membership is growing faster, increasing by about 15 to 20 members per month since January, he said.Casalini said many of his new members used to get loans or had lines of credit at the banks and therefore had enough cash to wait for checks to clear. But a tightening of lending standards has eliminated that option for them.

Long Island Business News, Jun 6, 2008