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North Mill Reports 2021 as Best Year in Company’s History

January 10, 2022
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JANUARY 6, 2022, NORWALK, CT – North Mill Equipment Finance LLC (“NMEF”), a Monitor 100 commercial equipment lender headquartered in Norwalk, Connecticut, announced today that 2021 was the best year in the company’s six decades-long history. Organic originations reached an all-time high and delinquencies hit an all-time low.

“Although 2021 posed many challenges, it turned out to be an extraordinarily successful year as our key performance indicators skyrocketed across the board,” said David C. Lee, Chairman and CEO, North Mill. “In the last three years, North Mill has burgeoned into a premium lender that has established a proven track record of innovation, execution, and operational excellence. Most notably, the partnerships that we’ve forged with our referral partners has allowed us to attain a level of success never before realized at this company.”

According to Pier Snider, EVP, CFO, “NMEF’s annual volume for 2021 increased 69% over prior year to $309M. The number of submitted applications rose to more than 19k, representing a 13% increase over 2020 submissions. Demonstrating an improvement in both efficiency and quality, the company funded 3.6K of those deals, a 51% increase year-over-year. Weighted average FICO shot up 5 points to 718, the highest score in the company’s history, while average deal size rose by more than $9k per transaction to hit an all-time high of $87K.” The company’s average yield remained north of 14% even with the higher average credit quality borrowers.

While annual indicators exceeded expectations, quarterly and monthly figures were also record-breaking. The fourth quarter of 2021 was exceptionally noteworthy as it, too, exemplifies the progression in the organization’s efficiency. NMEF experienced a 95% increase in volume in the 4Q 2021 vs the same period in 2020 while processing the same number of applications during the two periods. Moreover, December saw yet another new record funding volume level of $36.3M, a year-over-year increase of 83% while weighted average FICO increased to 730.

North Mill opened three new regional offices in 2021. An office in Irvine, CA was opened to better service larger referral partners for the company’s discounting programs while an office in Vorhees, NJ was established to leverage NMEF’s expanding workforce on the east coast near the Philadelphia metropolitan area. NMEF’s acquisition of Aztec Financial in September added an office in Murray, UT.

About North Mill Equipment Finance

North Mill Equipment Finance, a Monitor 100 company, originates and services small to mid-ticket equipment leases and loans, ranging from $15,000 to $1,000,000 in value. A broker-centric private lender, the company handles A – C credit qualities and finances transactions for a wide variety of asset categories including construction, transportation, vocational, medical, manufacturing, printing, franchise, renovation, janitorial and material handling equipment. North Mill is majority owned by an affiliate of WAFRA Capital Partners, Inc. (WCP). The company’s headquarters is in Norwalk, CT, with regional offices in Irvine, CA, Dover, NH, Voorhees NJ, and Murray, UT. For more information, visit www.nmef.com.

Dedicated Commercial Recovery Advances Its Mission by Becoming “Dedicated Financial GBC”

January 6, 2022
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New Brand Reflects Expanding Business and Charitable Missions

MINNEAPOLIS – January 6, 2022 – Shawn Smith, CEO of Dedicated Commercial Recovery, Inc. today announced that the company is becoming “Dedicated Financial GBC” in order to reflect its expanding business and charitable support programs.

“Since our founding, we have been a financial services company specializing in commercial collections,” said Smith. “Over the years, we have demonstrated to the world that we are not your typical commercial collections company, and we have a vision for providing much more than just commercial collections.”

“We decided that moving the company to a ‘general benefits corporation’ (GBC) made sense, especially in light of our dedication to being a ‘force for good’ and having a positive material impact on society,” said Smith. “To go along with moving to a GBC, we are implementing a new logo that also reflects our heart for, and commitment to, our business and charitable partnerships.”

“Leading with our values has brought our company growth and employee excellence since day one,” said Smith. “We decided it was time for our brand to reflect those values even more plainly.”

“We are using perhaps the most negatively stereotyped industry in the world to demonstrate that any business—even a collections company—can be a force for good,” concluded Smith.

About Dedicated Financial GBC

Dedicated Financial GBC, founded in 2015, is an ethical commercial collections company that partners with leaders who are looking to change the face of commercial collections. Dedicated Financial GBC has created a model of philanthropy that leverages company resources to improve communities around the world, donating both money and time to help nonprofits achieve their missions. The company has sustained partnerships with a dozen nonprofit organizations through volunteerism and charitable giving. More information is available at www.dedicatedcri.com.

Dedicated Commercial Recovery & Lease Security Systems Reach Agreement for Mutual Referral Relationship

December 28, 2021
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Agreement Centers on Blok Box SaaS, Providing Innovative Default Resolution

MINNEAPOLIS – December 28, 2021 – Dedicated Commercial Recovery CEO Shawn Smith and Lease Security Systems President Frank Thibodeau today announced that their companies have forged an agreement for a mutual referral relationship. The agreement centers on Dedicated Commercial Recovery use of Blok Box SaaS provided by Lease Security Systems.

The Blok Box is a combination surge protector and power interrupter that can be installed easily on any piece of electrically powered or controlled equipment. The Blok Box allows equipment to work normally until there is a default in payment, at which point the secured lender or lessor can disable the equipment remotely and wirelessly through the Blok Box website. When a default is resolved, the lender or lessor can return the equipment to normal operation immediately.

“We see this technology as an enhancement to our lessor services and to our commitment to work proactively and openly with lessees,” said Smith. “Blok Box allows us to be firm and yet unobtrusive. It’s a much more goodwilled approach to default than traditional repossession.”

“With Blok Box, leased equipment can be tracked easily and deactivated remotely, if needed,” said Thibodeau. “Though in most cases, the Blok Box service simply compels improved communication between the lessee and lessor before a cash flow issue becomes a default problem.”

“We know that our customers appreciate collection tools that are not heavy-handed, and that is why we recommend Dedicated Commercial Recovery to our customers,” said Thibodeau.

“At Dedicated, we will encourage our clients to use Blok Box as a tool to help facilitate open and honest communication between lessees and lessors,” said Smith. “This technology is tailor-made for a collections company like ours, where we value relationships and strive to honor the dignity of everyone we serve.”

About Dedicated Commercial Recovery

Dedicated Commercial Recovery is an ethical commercial collections company that partners with leaders who are looking to change the face of commercial collections. More information is available at https://www.dedicatedcri.com/.
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Centrex Software Announces New Relationship Building Technology at Broker Fair 2021

December 22, 2021
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Costa Mesa, CA— Finance technology (FinTech) in the traditional and alternative business finance industry is seeing a massive enhancement with the release of new technology from Centrex Software.

Centrex Software, a dedicated business lending CRM and loan/advance servicing software platform that brings multiple technologies all under one roof for direct funders, brokers, and investors, experienced 22% growth from 2019 to 2020 and 35% growth from 2020 to 2021, during a global pandemic. With that growth has come quite a bit of new thinking out of the Centrex Software management team.

When it comes to the business lending space, FinTech companies spend huge amounts of time focused on how to drive more users into their software. This strategy makes sense as it is what a large operating software company is required to focus on to generate revenue. “But what about our customers’ customers? What if we spent more time focused on driving our customers’ customers not to our software, but to our customers’ software? In our business, we fail if our customers can’t engage, retain, and sell to their customers. We want that relationship to thrive and grow so we have built technology to aid that,” says Trey Markel, Senior Software Specialist with Centrex.

In realizing there was a tech need for this new way of thinking, Centrex Software built a mobile app that is white labeled to Centrex Software customers so they can offer more relationship retaining and building solutions to their customers. Keith Nason, President at Velocity Funding Group, and a Centrex Software customer, explains, “Trey, Michael and the Centrex team are going to put my brand in the pockets of every single one of my customers. It was an entirely new strategy that you simply don’t see from other software companies, and it should create customer engagement like we have never seen before.” The new white labeled mobile app has a few features that will really put your marketing hat on. First, the white labeled app is fully integrated with Plaid so that pre- and post-funding, Centrex clients can actually link their banks accounts and manage their finances. On top of that, Centrex Software has an admin portal where Centrex clients can manage all their app users. One of the best parts is that, in the admin portal, Centrex clients will have the ability to send push notifications to smart watches and to mobile devices that can communicate to the end mobile app user. Plus, there are several other features that keep mobile app users engaged with Centrex clients and the broker partner via the mobile app.

In the same spirit of engaging more efficiently with customers, the Centrex team also built a WordPress plugin that allows its customers to build “Smart Applications” right on their website. Michael Lindsey, also a Senior Software Specialist with Centrex expressed, “Our clients need more tools that are forward facing to their customers to help make faster decisions and offer a better more automated experience.” Taking the automated application process a bit further, Centrex integrated the WordPress plugin with Universal Credit Services to pull and analyze credit data, and Plaid to pull and analyze financial data. This allows Centrex Software customers to automatically underwrite and create offers right on their website. The WordPress plugin will communicate all info and decisions into Centrex Software during each step of the process. Lastly, for those Centrex Software customers using both the WordPress plugin and the white labeled mobile app, once an application is completed by the business borrower on a Centrex Software customers website, it will automatically create a user for the mobile app in real-time. The end result is a completely seamless and streamlined business borrowing experience.

Perhaps the most impressive part of the two new technologies being released by Centrex Software on January 1st of 2022, is that in order to take advantage of the new tech, you don’t even need to be a Centrex Software CRM customer. “We understand that the Centrex CRM is only one option for funders and ISO’s out there. We also understand that there is much more than just CRM that is needed to build a successful finance business. Because of that, we built the WordPress plugin and the mobile app in an API based architecture so that any finance company using any CRM with an API can utilize the new Centrex technology. We wanted to capture more of the market with unique FinTech solutions, offering CRM alone can only get us a to a certain point.” says Trey Markel.

Needless to say, Centrex Software has really stepped it up as a full circle FinTech solution provider to the finance industry. Centrex Software will also be launching its new open REST API and amortization calculators in the new year to expand their tech offering. You can reach Centrex Software at www.centrexsoftware.com or email media@centrexsoftware.com

Velocity Group USA Names Keith Nason President, Launching KapSource in Q1 2022

December 16, 2021
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velocity group usaMelville, NY – December 16th, 2021 – Velocity Group USA is pleased to announce Keith Nason as the newly appointed President. In conjunction with stepping into the role as President, Nason will continue to hold his position as Chief Operating Officer, building on business development strategies and appointing new members of Velocity Group’s executive team.

“We have undergone many necessary changes over the past year, but the change we are most excited about is appointing Keith Nason as the President of Velocity Group. He has extensive industry experience, as well as the knowledge, innovation and vision to drive growth in 2022. I have no doubt these qualities will help set us apart from our competitors as we continue to expand our business,” said Lisa Gioia, Chief Executive Officer

Nason is an industry veteran with over eight years of experience within the Merchant Cash Advance market, specializing in both top and bottom-line growth, building infrastructure and security, data integrity, risk models, technology, and securing capital through multiple channels.

“Over the last 12 months, we’ve invested a tremendous amount of time, energy, and capital in our team, product, infrastructure and data security, as well as our process. Doing so has positioned us for significant growth in 2022 and beyond,” commented Nason.

He also credited his institutional investors as being a key to success by having faith in the long-term goals of the company, and confidence in the new team to prioritize long-term success over strictly short-term returns. Nason also stated, “It’s a true testament to the team that we were able to completely rebuild our business foundation while still funding over $100MM and producing record returns to our investors.”

With the revamp of the company infrastructure and data security, Velocity Group USA will be launching KapSource within the first quarter of 2022, a “business in a box” model that will allow other members of the industry to use its proprietary technology to increase conversions, alongside a marketplace in which brokers can fund their owns deals and create additional revenue streams through Velocity’s capital sources.

SBFA Launches Industry Certification for Small Business Finance Providers

November 16, 2021
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Certified Small Business Finance Professional will become industry standard

Certified Small Business Finance ProfessionalWashington, D.C.— The Small Business Finance Association (SFBA) today launched a new certification for the small business finance industry. The Certified Small Business Finance Professional (CSBFP) program will bring education and accountability to all providers of alternative finance products. The certification will require applicants complete a four-section training course, abide by industry best practices, provide industry references, pass an exam and be subject to a background check. The certification will also require applicants to complete continuing education classes every two years.

“This certification is a message to our customers that we want them to feel confident they are being offered fair capital options from responsible lenders,” said Steve Denis, the executive director of SBFA. “There are countless companies offering a proliferation of products and services and we believe it’s business owners deserve the comfort of knowing they are working with a certified professional.”

The certification will require applicants to complete a course centered on understanding products, laws governing the industry and compliance. The certification exam will focus on testing applicants’ ability to understand key concepts and best practices. Those who become certified will be allowed to use CSBFP branding in their marketing materials, have access to key regulatory updates and gain entry to a networking platform that will allow them to connect to industry and legal professionals.

“Our goal is to offer a fully immersive experience for certified professionals. We don’t simply want to give them a stamp but provide them a way to connect, learn and grow beyond the initial education process. It’s in the interest of our industry to offer best-in-class professionals, but more importantly, it’s in the interest of better serving our small business customers,” said Denis.

The certification is open to anyone working in the alternative small business finance industry. Interested professionals can learn more at www.csbfp.org or www.sbfassociation.org.

Contact:
Steve Denis 202.213.9506
sdenis@sbfassociation.org

Ascentium Capital LLC Reports $390M in Third Quarter Funding Volume

November 2, 2021
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ascentium logoKINGWOOD, Texas – Nov. 2, 2021Ascentium Capital LLC, a national commercial lender, announced continued growth during the third quarter of 2021. Financing volume increased $82 million, up 26% from the prior-year period. Strategic execution and ongoing economic recovery resulted in strong performance this quarter.

“Ascentium remains focused on delivering an exceptional customer experience supported by operational efficiencies, service excellence and competitive financing products. These core competencies are resonating with our clients and contributing to our positive momentum going into the fourth quarter,” said Tom Depping, executive vice president and Ascentium group manager.

Ascentium Capital offers specialized equipment financing and business loans to commercial entities nationwide. The company also provides customized finance programs for equipment manufacturers and distributers with simplified application procedures to help businesses in a broad array of industries including commercial vehicles, energy, franchise, healthcare, industrial, and technology.

“Quarter-over-quarter originations growth remains steady as we continue to satisfy our customers’ demands,” added David Lyder, senior vice president of Ascentium Sales and Marketing. “We are recruiting additional sales resources and refining existing products to keep pace with, and anticipate, our customers’ needs. Our top priority is helping our customers grow their businesses.”

About Ascentium Capital LLC

Ascentium Capital LLC, a subsidiary of Regions Bank, specializes in providing a broad range of business equipment financing, leasing, and loans across the United States. The Company’s offering is designed to benefit equipment manufacturers and distributors as well as direct to businesses nationwide. For additional information about Ascentium and its business financing products and services, please visit AscentiumCapital.com.

About Regions Financial Corporation

Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE:RF), with $156 billion in assets, is a member of the S&P 500 Index and is one of the nation’s largest full-service providers of consumer and commercial banking, wealth management, and mortgage products and services. Regions serves customers across the South, Midwest and Texas, and through its subsidiary, Regions Bank, operates more than 1,300 banking offices and approximately 2,000 ATMs. Regions Bank is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC. Additional information about Regions and its full line of products and services can be found at www.regions.com.

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Media Contact
Christine Kimball, Vice President, Marketing
Ascentium Capital LLC
ChristineKimball@AscentiumCapital.com
Ascentium on Twitter: @AscentiumTeam

IOU Financial Inc Surpasses $US 1 Billion in Loan Originations and Establishes All-time Record in Quarterly Loan Originations

November 2, 2021
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Company celebrates major milestone
in its 12-year history of funding small business growth in North America

Atlanta, November 2, 2021 – IOU FINANCIAL INC. (“IOU” or “the Company”) (TSX-V: IOU), a leading online lender to small businesses (IOUFinancial.com), announced today that it has surpassed US$1B in total loan originations.

“This is a major milestone for all IOU team members, partners and stakeholders,” said Robert Gloer, President and CEO. “In 12 years, the company has grown but our values have not changed: now more than ever we are committed to exceeding the expectations of our broker partners and the small business owners across North America who rely on our funding solutions to drive their growth plans.”

In addition, IOU announced today that its loan originations for the quarter ended September 30, 2021 surpassed all previous records. The company originated over US$52 million in small business loans in Q3, a new high-water mark in the 12-year history of the company, representing a sequential growth of 51.5% vs. Q2 2021, and 183.1% over Q3 2020.

“We are thrilled to surpass pre-pandemic loan origination numbers and start setting new all-time records for IOU Financial,” said Robert Gloer, President and CEO. “We remain cautiously optimistic that the economic recovery will continue despite the lingering potential macroeconomic and public health risks.”

IOU Financial originated its first loan in December 2009 and quickly positioned itself as a trusted alternative to banks by helping small business owners get fast and easy access to funding visa its proprietary IOU360 technology platform. The Company continued funding small businesses throughout the Covid-19 pandemic and has subsequently introduced the industry-first IOU Financial Cash Back Loan and announced an-all-time record in monthly loan originations.

“We faced the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic with the same entrepreneurial spirit that drove us to launch IOU Financial on the heels of the 2008 financial crisis – and both experiences have reinforced the importance of helping small businesses adapt to new challenges and grow” added Gloer. “Here’s to the next 12 years of small business growth!”

The Company is due to share its Q3 Financial Results in the coming weeks.

About IOU Financial Inc.

IOU Financial Inc. is a wholesale lender that provides quick and easy access to growth capital to small businesses through a network of preferred brokers across the US and Canada. Built on its proprietary IOU360 technology platform that connects underwriters, merchants and brokers in real time, IOU Financial has become a trusted alternative to banks by underwriting over $984 million as of September 20,2021 in loans to fund small business growth since 2009. IOU trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol IOU (TSXV: IOU), and on the US OTC markets as IOUFF. To learn more about IOU Financial’s corporate history, financial products, or to join our broker network please visit www.IOUFinancial.com.

Forward Looking Statements

Certain information set forth in this news release may contain forward-looking statements that involve substantial known and unknown risks and uncertainties. These forward-looking statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, certain of which are beyond the control of IOU including, but not limited to, the impact of general economic conditions, industry conditions, dependence upon regulatory and shareholder approvals, the execution of definitive documentation and the uncertainty of obtaining additional financing. Readers are cautioned that the assumptions used in the preparation of such information, although considered reasonable at the time of preparation, may prove to be imprecise and, as such, undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements. IOU does not assume any obligation to update or revise its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

For more information, please contact:

Robert Gloer, Chief Executive Officer, 866-217-8564 ext.308
David Kennedy, Chief Financial Officer, 514-789-0694 ext. 278
Carl Brabander, EVP of Strategy, 866-217-8564 ext. 4378