U.S. Economy Gains Momentum in Some Sectors

The PrimeRevenue platform processes more than $250 billion in payments annually and partners with more than 30,000 clients around the world. As such, we have unique access to a broad range of working capital data that can provide insights into global trade activity.

At the beginning of the global pandemic, trade activity in China indicated that there may be a light at the end of the tunnel for the first region to be impacted by COVID-19. As the effects (both human and economic) began to sweep across Europe, our data began to provide a clearer timeline into how other regions could expect the economic implications of the coronavirus to play out.

There is tremendous uncertainty in the U.S. economy right now – a looming election, social unrest, and the global pandemic are just a few of the factors impacting life in the U.S. We are diligently analyzing trade data to provide insights into how these factors affect the economy and what we can predict moving forward. What we’ve found are green shoots of improvement that prompt cautious optimism.

Our data indicates that there is hope for some level of economic recovery moving through the rest of the year. While there is still a long way to go, I am optimistic about the future. Multiple economic indicators currently suggest economic recovery in the U.S. is gaining momentum – and our data points to the same conclusion.

Consumer Discretionary Bounces Back as Volumes Exceed 2019 Levels       

Our U.S. programs largely consist of companies in the consumer discretionary and consumer staples sectors. These two sectors are arguably the most telling as they directly relate to the broader economy, which is deeply impacted by consumer spending habits (i.e. what they want vs. what they need).

The consumer discretionary sector is a wide umbrella that includes consumer durables and retailing. This sector is particularly indicative of the broader economy because consumer spending directly impacts it. In short, if there is no disposable income for consumers to spend, companies within this sector suffer.

As a whole, this sector was strongly impacted by the pandemic as consumers tightened their wallets. Despite this, there were signs of improvement as some categories within this sector gained momentum over the summer months.

We saw the first peak in same store sale invoice uploads on April 6, approximately 4 weeks after the lockdown in the U.S. began. We attribute this spike to consumers sheltering in place and taking notice of projects on their cars or in their home.

The economic landscape meant consumers were purchasing fewer new cars and were instead opting to do repairs themselves. Similarly, DIY projects around the house became more top-of-mind. Add warm summer barbeque and picnic weather, which historically drives gas and charcoal grill sales, and home improvement retailers saw strong sales in Q2 and Q3.

Public data from several automotive after-market retailers validates our data. AutoZone reported a strong performance in their fourth quarter, with same store sales up 21.8%. In a recent press release, President and CEO of Advance Auto Parts Tom Greco shared that the company benefitted from a change in how consumers repaired and maintained their vehicles. In fact, Advance Auto Parts’ second quarter earnings report states the company saw their highest quarterly growth rate in nearly a decade, with second quarter same store sales up 7.5%.

After the first peak on April 6, invoice upload volume declined for a period of 35 days until May 11 where invoice uploads hit the lowest point for this sector at 30% below 2019 levels. We believe this decline stemmed from the spike in unemployment in the U.S. beginning the month of April and a subsequent tightening of wallets.

We saw a slight but steady increase in invoice upload volume of same store sales from May to September. On June 26, this year’s levels surpassed 2019 for the first time since lockdown began in the U.S. Between June 26 and September 2, rolling average in uploads remained consistently above 2019 levels. On September 2, rolling average of invoice uploads saw its second peak of the year, at 29% above 2019 volumes. We attribute this to the fact that unemployment rates in the U.S. are steadily decreasing and consumers are adjusting to the “new normal.”

Looking forward, we expect this sector to continue to meet pre-COVID levels. As demand for essential retail continues to surge and the automotive industry bounces back, consumer discretionary should stay within a close range of last year (given we don’t see a second severe resurgence of the virus and election uncertainty doesn’t significantly impact consumer spending).

Continued Growth in Consumer Staples Remains Strong

Consumer staples, which includes food retailing and food & beverage, did not see the sudden decline that other sectors experienced as companies within this sector sell items that are staples for most Americans. In fact, the consumer staples sector has been exceptionally resilient through the heart of the lockdown and is consistently meeting 2019 levels.

Upload volume in Q3 within this sector was only less than quarter of a percent lower than the same period last year – a significant feat considering the volatility experienced by other sectors.

The sector’s resilience is expected as this category is largely comprised of food and beverage companies. Frozen foods and consumer packaged goods companies saw particularly strong performance as consumers stocked up their freezers at the beginning of the pandemic and opted for quick and easy meals once cooking fatigue set in.

For Conagra Food Brands, one of our award-winning programs, these behaviors have translated into strong financial growth. For its first quarter ending September 30, organic net sales increased 15% with significant growth in each of the company’s three retail segments.

Given this sector’s Q3 performance, we can reasonably expect stability through the rest of 2020.

While it’s clear the road to recovery will be long, there is hope in the fact that many businesses are at least keeping pace with 2019 metrics. While many businesses would not normally celebrate merely breaking even with last year, that’s considered a win in today’s unprecedented climate.

The trade activity we see across our platform gives us a unique, data-driven perspective into where exactly that recovery is taking root and to what extent. We will continue monitoring data as is evolves to provide new insights into working capital trends and global trade activity. Follow us on LinkedIn to stay up to date with our latest reports.

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Stephanie Wargo

VP, Global Head of Marketing

Stephanie joined PrimeRevenue in 2015 and oversees the company’s global marketing team and strategy. With a data-driven approach, Stephanie focuses on demand generation and thought leadership to drive brand awareness, strengthen client/partner relationships, and generate new sales opportunities. Stephanie has guided PrimeRevenue through new technology releases and an evolving FinTech landscape. In addition to leading PrimeRevenue’s internal and external communications, she implemented innovative demand generation and marketing strategies to enhance the company’s overall sales pipeline.

Stephanie has extensive experience in marketing and customer success. She previously served as Vice President of Marketing and Communications at BitPay and Vice President of Client Relations and Marketing at FirstView Financial. Stephanie earned a B.A. degree in Political Science from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia.

Brian Medley

VP, Global Head of Sales

Brian joined PrimeRevenue in early 2012, after more than 20 years of sales leadership, executive-level consultant and business growth experience. As VP, Global Head of Sales, Brian leads a growing team of fintech sales professionals with a focus on developing strong customer relationships, improving sales predictability and helping PrimeRevenue enter the lucrative mid-market.

Prior to PrimeRevenue, Brian honed his enterprise software sales leadership skills at Clarus Corporation. He also served as an operations and IT management consultant for Kurt Salmon Associates. In addition to his sales and consulting background, Brian has deep experience in the financial industry having founded a successful residential mortgage broker and lending business. He is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology having earned a B.S. in Industrial Engineering and Economics and M.B.A. in Global Business.

Jason Green

SVP, Global Customer Success

Jason joined PrimeRevenue in 2021 following more than two decades in the fintech/financial services industry. He brings a strong background is sales leadership due to his impressive relationship building capability as well as a successful track record in creating structure and process improvements. In his role, Jason uses his keen attention to detail to strengthen the customer experience and enhance the company’s solutions to deliver more value to clients.

Prior to joining the company, Jason held several senior level and executive roles with a focus on building and scaling sales and support organizations at both large and small companies. Jason graduated from Murray State University with a B.S in Marketing.

Matt Ford

SVP, Global Product Innovation

Matt joined PrimeRevenue in early 2015 and is responsible for overseeing all commercial, strategic and operational aspects of PrimeRevenue’s supply chain finance offerings throughout EMEA, based in Prague. He has been instrumental in gaining global alignment and developing supplier enablement processes for the region.

Matt joined PrimeRevenue following a 15-year career at Morgan Stanley, where he worked in fixed income operations covering debt syndication through bonds, EMTNS, corporate loans and other debt securitization. Notably, he set up non-core location operations in Europe (Budapest) and all lending operations in Baltimore from scratch.

Matt, who was born and raised in South East England, earned a B.S. in Sports Science at University of Teesside where he mastered the art of TEAM development and accountability as a youth international rugby player.

Dominic Capolongo

EVP, Global Head of Funding

Dominic joined PrimeRevenue in 2016, and is responsible for leading our bank and capital markets funding strategies and execution. He focuses on building global, scalable and highly efficient funding structures that maximize options for supporting PrimeRevenue’s programs. Dominic began his career as an attorney and was a partner with Kaye Scholer before joining DLJ as a senior banker. Dominic brings tremendous strategic and capital markets experience in all areas of finance having held senior positions at, among others, Credit Suisse and RBC Capital Markets in addition to DLJ. Dominic earned a JD from Fordham University School of Law and a BA from SUNY Binghamton.

Gavin Cicchinelli

Chief Operating Officer

Gavin joined PrimeRevenue as Chief Operating Officer in 2021. With more than two decades of leadership and executive experience along with a deep understanding of the payments space, Gavin provides a unique focus on improving and strengthening operational strategies and implementing GTM growth execution. He is responsible for leading transformation across corporate and operational strategies as well as building a repeatable and scalable commercial growth strategy that aligns with PrimeRevenue’s core business while delivering key adjacent growth opportunities.

Prior to joining PrimeRevenue, Gavin served as President and Chief Revenue Officer of Integrated Solutions at TSYS, a global payment processing services company acquired by Global Payments (NYSE:GPN). There, he also served as Head of Product and divisional COO. Throughout his career, Gavin has held multiple leadership positions including VP of Sales, SVP of Business Development, and President of Financial Institutions. Gavin graduated from the University of Northern Colorado, Greeley.

David Quillian

Chief Legal Officer

David joined PrimeRevenue as General Counsel in 2007. He and his team have been instrumental in successfully creating the unique legal structures that support PrimeRevenue’s multi-funder model and global funding capabilities. David is also the lead named inventor on PrimeRevenue’s two patents for Electronic Time Drafts, which allow PrimeRevenue to manage supply chain finance programs using electronic negotiable instruments as opposed to accounts receivable. Prior to PrimeRevenue, David was General Counsel at Harbor Payments, which was acquired by American Express (AXP) in 2006, and Magnet Communications, which was acquired by Digital Insight (DGIN) in 2003. He holds degrees in Economics and History from Duke University, and Juris Doctor and M.B.A. degrees from the University of Georgia.

Nathan Feather


Nathan has successfully ushered PrimeRevenue from our very early days as a visionary startup, through the financial crisis to today’s position as a thriving mid-sized leader in the cloud-enabled supply chain finance marketplace since joining PrimeRevenue in January 2006. He was instrumental in recapitalizing the company with an $80M investment led by BBH Capital Partners in 2015. Prior to PrimeRevenue, he held various financial management roles with Ariba, Freemarkets and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Nathan holds a BS in Accounting from Pennsylvania State University.

PJ Bain


PJ has an impressive and accomplished track record as an enterprise software entrepreneur and executive. PJ has built a solid record of success with PrimeRevenue since being appointed Chief Executive Officer in July of 2009. The company has received numerous awards for growth, customer service, innovation, along with being recognized as a top employer.

PJ is a life-long software and technology entrepreneur having been involved in numerous firms in the roles of founder, executive, advisor and investor. Immediately prior to PrimeRevenue, PJ was the VP and General Manager of Exact Holding N.V. (NYSE/AMS: EXACT), a leading global provider of business software solutions. He was previously Founder and CEO of Inspired Solutions, an Atlanta-based, B2B software and services firm that grew to be the largest reseller of Exact Software in North America, later acquired by Exact. PJ holds a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.