National Funding CEO David Gilbert was a panelist at the recent one-day ELFA/IMN Investors Conference held in New York City. The session, “New Products and Trends Emerging in Our Sector,” was designed to educate investors on an array of trends in the equipment finance industry.
The 13th Annual Investors Conference on Equipment Finance was hosted by the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) and the Information Management Network (IMN). Attendees included equipment finance professionals, institutional investors and service providers who support the industry.
As founder and CEO of National Funding, a small business financial services company, Gilbert brought his perspective to the discussion on what products and services are emerging in the equipment finance sector. Gilbert’s insights on current industry developments were based on what National Funding has experienced over the last five years of economic recovery. The session “New Products and Trends Emerging in Our Sector,” was moderated by Barbara Goodstein of Mayer Brown LLP. In addition to David Gilbert, panelists Ed Tamiso of Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services, Joe Franco of Genpact and Christian Haesslein from DZ Bank contributed their insight on the topic.
Ed Tamiso, an analyst at Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services, spoke about Trend #1: More commercial finance companies are issuing ABS for the first time. Gilbert covered Trend #2: Alternative lending sources are filling a small-business funding niche. According to Gilbert, alternative lenders are starting to finance customers who are buying equipment with nontraditional short-term working capital loans versus three-to-five year leasing agreements. In addition, he covered alternative funding products such as merchant cash advances, short-term business loans and peer-to-peer funding — which connects borrowers and lenders online. Joe Franco of Genpact covered Trend #3: Technology has “invaded” the equipment finance space, becoming a major competitive advantage.
“The Great Recession was a catalyst for the growth of alternative lenders offering nontraditional sources of working capital for small businesses. For example, at National Funding we offer both leases and daily payment loans,” said Gilbert. “These days, the market offers financing options that traditional banks don’t offer. One big outcome of the credit crunch was the development of new kinds of loans that help business owners manage their finances.”