April 30, 2001

 

 

 

 Headlines----

            Leasing Salesman Pay Survey

             Illegal or Unethical---Neither is Good Business/Paul Menzel

                U.S.Capital--Ken Nelson

                   Humboldt Bancorp---"Closing" is the same as "Selling"?

                      Membership Chairman Bill Grohe ( photo on line )

         Fleet Claims First Major Bank in the Northeast

               to Introduce Wireless Banking and Bill Paying Capabilities

           eCredit Makes Red Herring Top 100

 

 

 

 

  Humboldt Bancorp Declares Their SEC Filing Not As It "Reads"

            -Bancorp Financial Services "Not Closing---Is For Sale."

 

 

"... classified BFS as a discontinued operation effective March 31,  2001. Humboldt Bancorp

recognized a loss on discontinued  operations of $1.1 million, net of tax, for the first quarter

2001 and is reporting its investment in BFS as an unconsolidated subsidiary held for

sale."

 

At the request of Humboldt Bancorp CFO Pat Rusnack and Bancorp Financial Services VP Doug Rees, along with their attorney Mark Serlin, we made a separate newsletter as a correction

of our reporting the statement made in their press release and in the Security Exchange Commission filing. While the report said it was "discontinued...effective March 30,2001,

they stated it was really "for sale."  Here are responses from readers: 

 

 

Kit, you were relying on their 10Q report which was filed with the SEC. Is that not public

information? Also how can they tell the SEC they are closing the operation, but say

that they are not and it is for "accounting purposes;" and the company is really for sale?  Doesn't seem truthful to me.

 

Name With Held

 

 

Something is not proper with Humboldt Bank and Bancorp Financial Services.  Current

and potential shareholders are being misinformed if they read the official filing with

the Securities Exchange Commission. It says in "black and white" they are closing

the operation, but want you to apologize because they are not...the company is

just for sale? Doesn't read truthful to me.

 

Please Withhold my name as I am a banker in another state, and perhaps

things are different in California than here on the East Coast..

 

Name With Held

 

 

I see your correction but I think you went overboard to be apologetic to

those guys.  I for one, can understand the mistake you made. From now on I would tell them to review all information releases before they let something go that clearly creates

the impression that they are OOB.

 

Bob Rodi

drlease@leasenow.com

 

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   A.J.  Richest Man in Leasing????

 

Regarding your statement about A.J. Batt being the richest man in leasing,

does he outpace Paul Gass' windfall when Eaton Financial was purchased by

AT&T Capital for $70 million in 1989?

 

Brian Cascarano

VP Marketing

IFC Credit Corp

bcascarano@ifccredit.com

 

       +              +             +

 

Hey Kit, about that richest man in leasing article. Isn't Pat Patton worth a

heap of money?

 

Sincerely,

 

Brian Callahan

Senior Account Executive

GSC Capital LLC

(800) 956-1886 ext 105

bcallahan@gsccapital.com <mailto:bcallahan@gsccapital.com>

 

 

  (  A.J.'s leasing company allegedly has a portfolio of $1.8 million leases they manager.

     It is only one of ten companies he owns, from starting in leasing in the 1970's. 

 He was 100% owner of the leasing company at the time of the sale. Cyberlease that he kept, an    internet company, did $500 million in  small ticket from 1992 to 1999, he reported.  He has other companies, real  estate, and anyone invited to his box for the S.F. 49ers knows his style.

 He was like old money, he never had to prove anything.

 A.J. never bragged about his money, wasn't a playboy, worked all the time, having fun doing    it, and watched every penny. He isn't going to comment on this, as he is not like

 other people in business who brag how much money they have, etc.  He is a real down to

 earth guy, and many of us who have parents still alive, or have recently died,

 understand what he meant when he said he likes to have dinner with his 91 grandmother

 and visit her more often  which he can do being retired from ATEL Group. editor ).

 

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  Sierra Cities.com

 

The site still lists Thomas Depping as president, and despite advertisements

elsewhere, the employment page says:

 

"SierraCities.com has no career openings at this time. Thank you for your interest.

 Please check with us again soon.

 

"If you have already applied for a position, you may update your account."

 

I noticed in correspondence with Len Baccaro, he earlier was a vice-president,

and I thought the sales manager. But in recent e-mails, he is now a regional

manager.  I asked him what that meant, or why it appears the web site was down

down for several days, but have not received a response.

 

I could not find a tie in on the American Express web site, which has not changed

with the programs they offer their card holders and business flex or American Express

leasing or finance for vendors.

 

Some of the stories told to us by Rockford ex-employees when American Express acquired

this leasing company come to mind. Very interesting.  Any readers who have some

"inside news," please share with us.

 

 

 

 

                    Leasing Salesmen Pay Survey

 

Leasing News is conducting a survey of what equipment leasing salesmen are paid

today.  We are asking for information from readers. Please be assured all

information will be kept confidential as to source. We will not quote you or

your company, unless you specifically give us permission.

 

You may help with this survey by sending an e-mail ( kitmenkin@leasingnews.org )

 or going to our web site and using our contact form ( which does not require

 identity: http://www.leasingnews.org/contact_us.htm )

 

Here are responses from eight companies we have received to date, divided into Lessor and

Broker/Discount salesmen:

 

Lessor:

 

#1

We pay 2% of equipment volume in compensation.   Generally there is a base of $48K and the 2%

commish is paid for volume over $200K.  They also earn 25% of the fee of any brokered deal they

bring in. The 25% split of broker income is independent of our funded  equipment volume  We pay

monthly though will probably shift to

quarterly.

 

#2

As a sales rep, with 4 years experience I make a base salary of $48k with a chance to make

commission once I make more money for the company than it takes to keep my seat, i.e. $4000 per

month. It seemed to be online with the Advanta commission plan but unless you really generate

volume you cannot realize commission.

 

#3

Our plan is pretty simple.  Our sales reps working with vendors and lessees

are paid a commission of 3% of the equipment cost.

 

#4

Around here, be it small ticket or big ticket, I believe all the lease

origination personnel have had a base salary and then a bonus once a certain

minimum volume was done on a monthly (for the small ticket group) or annual

(for the large ticket group) basis.  Our most experienced and senior large

ticket salesperson makes well into the 6 figure range I've heard but they

consistently book volume in the tens of millions each year. I think all our

large ticket group that have been here two or more years each make over

$100,000 per year between base and bonus.

 

Our small ticket people have had the potential to make six figures but it

has always been heavily volume dependent.

 

There are several different bases, based on whether or not they hit their bogey for the

year or month.  Bonus is only paid once minimum target volume is reached.

If someone is not hitting their target within a year around here they

usually let them go.

 

 

Discount/Broker

 

#1

I pay my in-house sales people as follows:  Base Salary of 30K per year. 

this covers the first $5,000 in GP.  I allocate 50% of any deal the generate

themselves and 10% of the GP on any house deal that I assign to them to help

them cover the first $5,000 in GP.  On the second 5,000 in GP the sales rep

earns 25% and 40 % on any GP generated after that.  A rep working for me can

justify their existence at about $800K per year in volume.  They will make

$45-50K at $100K per month in volume and about $75K at $150K per month in

volume.

 

#2

We get 35% of the first $10,000 per month in gross that we bring into the

company.  We get 45% above $10,000 and 50% above $18,000 per month.

We split document fees over the amount required in the approval.  It is

all commission, no guarantee.

 

#3

We pay a reconciling draw against commissions ranging from $10,000.00 per

month to $2,000.00 per month.  The rep makes commission of 25% of the gross

revenues generated.  Once they become three months behind on their draw, the

draw is discontinued.

 

#4

You may quote me.

 

Several years ago I became aware of a survey done by The Manifest Group where

they found that the average equipment leasing salesperson, with two year's

experience, earned an average of $25,000 per year.  This was, I was told, a

national average, which by definition means that half the salespeople

nationally earned less than $25,000 per year, and half earned more than

$25,000 per year.

 

At my former company, we compensated salespeople with a 50% split of the

gross commission due on the leasing transaction.  The salespeople generally

had use of our office space, and we paid for special promotions.  In

addition, we provided an auto allowance of $300 per month, and a telephone

allowance of $150 per month.  We found it necessary, in virtually all cases,

to provide the salespeople with a draw against future earned commissions.  We

found that even our most experienced salespeople did not break-even on this

arrangement until they were employed with us at least three years.

 

The most generous compensation program I have first-hand knowledge of

provides the leasing salespeople with 65% of the gross transaction

commission.  This company, a longtime, successful leasing broker, also

provides office space, use of telephone, and the payment of advertising

promotions. 

 

In fairness to all leasing salespeople, their compensation potential depends

as much on their company's access to capital, and flexible financing plans,

as it does on their individual sales ability and work ethic.  In our case, at

just the time our salespeople began to realize their individual potential,

their ability to grow their earnings was drastically curtailed by our loss of

bank funding.

 

My only advice to your inquirer is: carefully evaluate the company you

represent or will represent.  Your ability to cultivate vendor and lessee

relationships depends to a great degree on your company's ability to deliver

on its credit program and funding promises.  Unfortunately, in today's

economic and leasing environment, the only thing you can count on is uncertainty. 

 

Steve Chriest

schriest@aol.com

 

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           Virus --came from virus that hit Todd Cadwallader

 

 

 

 Apparently this is a virus that was sent to me and has been sent out to

recipients in my address book.  I receive your newsletter and I am also in

the leasing industry.  I apologize for any viruses that may have been sent

to you.  At this time, I am still trying to figure out what exactly

happened.  I will update you when I know.  Rest assure, you nor the leasing

industry is being targeted.

 

My anti-virus is not detecting a virus at this time.  So, I will continue to

investigate.

 

My Apologies,

 

Todd Cadwallader

Lonestar Leasing

972 380-8317 tel

972 380-8357 fax

Cadwallader@ev1.net

 

  Virus Received was not aimed at us specifically, but was one of those viruses

  that hits a user, then sends out e-mail messages as if from the sender.

 

  It is important that you do not open any attachment, unless you know who it

  is from, and receive on a regular basis, or verify it directly. Even if you

  have an anti-virus program.  We don't open any attachment at Leasing News

  without specifically e-mailing the sender to verify that they sent it.

  I would suggest a free virus scan at www.microtrend.com or www.antivirus.com.

  editor

 

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  Illegal or Unethical---Neither is Good Business

 

   Paul Menzel, Santa Barbara Bank & Trust

 

 

As the economic landscape gets more challenging, the topics of fraud and ethical practices seem

to be more popular in the news, including your newsletter.  I would like to raise awareness of

an illegal practice that may be occurring in our industry.  Variations of the practice might not be illegal but are certainly unethical.

 

We have encountered a couple of instances that were reported to us where a lease telemarketer

searched UCC filings with us a secured party to prospect our existing customers.  The illegal

activity arises when and if the marketer uses our name and represents or intimates that they

have some sort of agency agreement or arrangement with us to solicit business from them.

 

Activity of this ilk could be an unfair or fraudulent business practice in violation of Calif.

Bus. and Prof. Code Sections 17200 et seq., depending on the representations and specific

circumstances.  As a Federally regulated institution, I am required by law to report such

alleged activity to our General Counsel, which then may be forwarded on to other Federal

agencies for investigation. 

 

I suspect that other funding sources have been subject to similar type activity.  I feel it is

important to warn anyone who has used this technique or is considering using it, that they do so at considerable risk of violating the law.  I will reiterate that the legality of such activity

depends on the facts and circumstances of same.

 

Thank you for airing this subject. By doing so, it serves as an opportunity to be educated on

what it means to conduct our businesses in an ethical manner.  The good reputation of the

Leasing Industry is critical to the future prosperity of us all.  Our reputation is established

by our actions.  We are all stake holders.

 

*************************************************

Paul J. Menzel, CLP

Senior Vice President / General Manager

Leasing Division

SANTA BARBARA BANK & TRUST

P.O. Box 1199

Santa Barbara, CA 93102-1199

1 South Los Carneros Road

Goleta, CA 93117

(805)560-1650

PaulM@sbbt.com

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                Bill Grohe

 

            United Association of Equipment Leasing Membership Director Bill Grohe

qualifies for the United States Masters Swimming Short Course Championships to be held at the

Santa Clara Swim Center here on May 17 through the 20th.

        

Bill qualified in the Santa Cruz match.  He was in the top ten at the year 2000 Masters Swimming Championship in Munich, Germany last year.  The meet has over 7600 swimmers (ages 19-90) from 70 different countries competing in age groups of five years.  He was a major contender for five races, coming in number eleven in the same one he will be competing here in Santa Clara.. He swims in the age 65to 69 group. 

 

 

I first meet Bill in 1971, when he was buying leases. He started his San Francisco firm,

Brentwood Funding Enterprises, in the early 80's.  As the chair of the Brokers' Committee, Bill

was a vocal proponent of Brokers' Rights.  He also helped to develop the strong Broker

Educational program which is now the cornerstone of all United Association of Equipment Leasing

conferences.  In 1991, as the president of the Western Association of Equipment Lessors (WAEL),

it was his vision which resulted in the association developing a national presence, ultimately

changing it's name to the United Association of Equipment Leasing (UAEL).  He basically sold his lease company and manufacturing company to his daughter, was handling some medical financing accounts, but was enjoying sailing and visiting with friends.  When he learned that UAEL was

in need of building its membership, he agreed to take on this responsibility for his

alta mater.

 

  You can contact him at: bill@uael.org

 

 

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  Ken Nelson--U.S.Capital, Santa Barbara, Ca.

 

Interesting comments on Ken Nelson.  I had no idea that his guy had attained

such a reach.  I met him about the same time as Doug Dawkins, maybe a little

before.  I had started in the leasing business but it was a sideline at the

time as I was still working full time in the photo copier industry. I was

the sales manager at Master Business Machines in Hayward, CA.  Ken Nelson

called on me religiously and everything he suggested was a scam.  He did

have a high opinion of himself and he was, at the time, at "broker" for

Multifund at Oyster Point, or at least he said he was ( and this is not

to be confused with Bob Wilkin's company, which was in San Jose, and I

must have confused with Bob's---Bob is getting older, but his memory

is still there, and if he says it was not his Multifund, that's it. editor )

 

Nelson came to me with some MLM scheme for the leasing business.  It was such a

 scam I actually had to laugh while I was throwing him out of my office.  Mr. Nelson

subsequently contacted me on several occasions to keep me abreast of his activities.  He

always had an angle and suffered no embarrassment for anything he ever

presented.  The last time I spoke with him was about 5 years ago when he

tracked me down in New Jersey.  He attempted to solicit my business and when

he found out that I was funding my own business on a warehouse line he

immediately switched gears and started talking to me about selling me

business.  This was an example of his "opportunistic" nature.  The sad thing

about Ken Nelson was that he was a likeable guy. The kind of guy who would

strike up a conversation with you in a bar, tell you a joke and make you

feel comfortable.  The problem, in my opinion was that he wasn't satisfied

with that because he'd try to pick your pocket,just for kicks.  I really

don't think he was malicious, but "getting over" on people and then having

them feel good about it was definitely a challenge that he relished.

Fortunately the days I spent as a police office in Baltimore taught me how

to spot these characters so I could keep them away or "get over" on them

first.  If anyone has ever met a true "con man" Ken Nelson fit the

description.  I wouldn't have done business with him on a bet but I think I

understand why his friend liked him so much.

 

The tragic thing about this guy is that he probably could have achieved

great things in this industry  He was charismatic and he had the kind of

qualities that make people want to follow. He always looked for the easy way

in life and he apparently decided to take that road in death.  I can almost

guarantee that wherever he is, he's trying to talk his way out, or into,

something. 

 

Hearins Doug Dawkins name, from Dana, also made me think of another

character from that same era in the Bay Area that I think about from time to

time. I wonder if Doug remembers a guy named Joe Teiko?  That's a whole

'nother story.

 

Bob Rodi

LeaseNOW, Inc.

www.leasenow.com

drlease@leasenow.com

1-800-321-LEAS (5327) x 101

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