Paul Butze Joins Merchants Bank Equipment Finance as Vice President and Senior Regional Vendor Finance Manager

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Respected commercial financing professional Paul Butze has been hired as Vice President and Senior Regional Vendor Finance Manager, according to Rick Barry, President of Merchants Bank Equipment Finance (MBEF).

Butze has been in the commercial financing and leasing field for more than 34 years, including the past 15 years at TCF Equipment Finance, where he and Barry worked together at one time.

“I’m excited to be working with Paul again,” Barry said. “People in our industry know and respect him. He is a proven performer and committed to building, maintaining and enhancing long-term relationships.”

Butze said MBEF is continuing to grow, and he is looking forward to sharing its story.

“If they don’t already know about us, I think people in the vendor finance area will be interested in learning what MBEF can do to help them,”Butze said.

MBEF primarily provides equipment lease and loan financing options to businesses throughout the U.S. MBEF finances tangible assets over terms of 2 to 10 years on equipment with values generally ranging from $50,000 to over $10 million. MBEF serves many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing, food and agriculture.

Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI), the parent company for MBEF and which also owns 21 Merchants Bank locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin, has more than $1.6 billion in assets and is one of the largest independent financial organizations in its region.

Controller Greg Rasmussen Promoted to Officer at Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

Greg Rasmussen, Controller at Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

Greg Rasmussen, Controller for Merchants Bank Equipment Finance (MBEF), has been promoted to an Officer with MBEF, according to Richard Barry, President of MBEF.

“Greg is an integral part of the ongoing review of our financial performance and charting the course for our future,” Barry said. “His skill and insight have contributed greatly to our growth.”

In addition, to his duties as Controller, Rasmussen supports the MBEF Sales and Portfolio Management team in pricing, software support and detailed reporting.

“MBEF is an important part of our entire organization in that it provides a viable leasing alternative for customers,” Rasmussen said. “It’s been great to be a part of it as we’ve grown and helped our customers.”

MBEF’s primary sales office is in Minneapolis. Rasmussen’s office is in Winona, within the team at Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI), MBEF’s parent company, and Merchants Bank. Rasmussen has been very active running the transportation and pick-up for Merchants Bank’s “10 Days of Giving” food drive that supports the food shelf at Winona Volunteer Services.

Rasmussen is a native of River Falls, Wis., and is a graduate of Winona State University. He joined MBEF in 2000, and was one of six employees. Today, MBEF has 12 employees and has continued to make a significant impact to MFGI’s bottom line. MBEF primarily provides equipment lease and loan financing options to businesses located throughout the central U.S. and also partners with other finance companies in equipment finance transactions outside its marketing footprint. MBEF finances tangible assets over terms of 2 to 10 years on equipment with values generally ranging from $50,000 to over $10 million. MBEF serves many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing, food and agriculture.

MFGI, the parent company for MBEF, owns 21 Merchants Bank locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin, has more than $1.6 billion in assets and is one of the largest independent financial organizations in its region.

Rick Barry Elected to ELFA Financial Institutions Business Council Steering Committee

Rick Barry, MBEF President

Rick Barry, President of Merchants Bank Equipment Finance (MBEF), has been elected to a two-year term on the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association’s (ELFA) Financial Institutions Business Council Steering Committee, according to an announcement from ELFA.

“The reason I wanted to serve on this committee is to provide an additional voice to the community banking segment of our industry,” said Barry.

Barry is one of 20 committee members representing bank-related and other financial institutions (commercial banks, investment banks, and multi-line finance companies) engaged in the middle-market and large-ticket sectors. The committee analyzes the needs of companies in this segment and recommends to the Board of Directors how to meet those needs. The committee is one of five primary constituent bodies at ELFA.

“Having Merchants Bank Equipment Finance represented on the Steering Committee provides a voice to the needs and priorities of the small and medium-sized businesses we serve,” Barry said. “One of the responsibilities of the committee is to lobby our representatives in Congress on behalf of our institution and our customers.”

MBEF primarily provides equipment lease and loan financing options to businesses located throughout the central U.S. and also partners with other finance companies in equipment finance transactions outside its marketing footprint.  MBEF finances tangible assets over terms of 2 to 10 years on equipment with values generally ranging from $50,000 to over $10 million. MBEF serves many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing, food and agriculture.

Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI), the parent company for MBEF and which also owns 21 Merchants Bank locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin, has more than $1.6 billion in assets and is one of the largest independent financial organizations in its region.

ELFA is the trade association that represents companies in the $1 trillion equipment finance sector, which includes financial services companies and manufacturers engaged in financing capital goods. ELFA members are the driving force behind the growth in the commercial equipment finance market and contribute to capital formation in the U.S. and abroad. Its 575 members include independent and captive leasing and finance companies, banks, financial services corporations, broker/packagers and investment banks, as well as manufacturers and service providers.

Richard Barry Named President at Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

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Rick Barry, President of Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

Equipment financing leader Richard Barry has been named President at Merchants Bank Equipment Finance (MBEF), according to Rodney R. Nelson, CEO of Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI).

Barry started November 14, allowing him time to work alongside current MBEF President Brad Brolsma through the end of the year and learn first-hand about MBEF’s growing customer base. Brolsma retired December 31, after 14 years with MBEF.

“Rick has tremendous experience and connections in the equipment financing industry. We are excited he has joined our team and will be leading Merchants Bank Equipment Finance,” Nelson said. “We are very pleased that he will have some time to work with Brad to learn about our key customer relationships that we value so greatly.”

Barry brings extensive industry experience, including nearly 20 years working in equipment finance with GE, TCF, and, most recently, U.S. Bank.

“MBEF has an excellent and growing reputation in our industry for providing smart and strategic answers to its customers,” Barry said. “I’m looking forward to working with the team Brad has put together and continue the growth with both new and existing customers through providing the best in service and solutions.”

MBEF provides equipment financing options to businesses located throughout the Upper Midwest and also partners with other finance companies in equipment finance transactions outside of its marketing footprint. Founded in 1988, MBEF works to meet the needs of its customers across many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing and food and agriculture.

MBEF is located in Edina. In addition to MBEF, MFGI owns Merchants Bank locations, including Minnesota locations in Winona, St. Charles, Goodview, Rochester, Rushford, Lanesboro, Caledonia, La Crescent, Spring Grove, Cannon Falls, Red Wing, Hampton, and the southern Twin Cities metropolitan suburbs of Apple Valley, Cottage Grove, Hastings, Lakeville and Rosemount. Merchants has Wisconsin locations in Eau Claire and Onalaska. All banks are FDIC members and equal housing lenders.

Merchants Capital Resources, Inc. Changes Name to Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

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Bradley Brolsma, President

Merchants Capital Resources, Inc. has changed its name to Merchants Bank Equipment Finance as of January 1, according to President Bradley R. Brolsma.

“Our new name better describes what we do best, and that is financing the equipment needs of our customers,” Brolsma said of the company, founded in 1988.

Merchants Bank Equipment Finance primarily provides equipment financing options to businesses located throughout the central U.S. and also partners with other finance companies in equipment finance transactions outside of their marketing footprint.  The company finances tangible assets over terms of 2 to 10 years, on equipment with values generally ranging from $50,000 to over $10 million.

Merchants Bank Equipment Finance tailors equipment financing options to best meet the needs of its customers across many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing and food and agriculture. Brolsma pointed out the name change will not change the positive experience of current and prospective customers.

“Our same knowledgeable staff will be ready to help current and new customers with their equipment financing needs,” Brolsma said. “We’re looking forward to this next chapter in our growth.”

The name change also more closely aligns Merchants Bank Equipment Finance with the brand of its parent company, Merchants Bank, N.A., which is a business banking leader in southeastern Minnesota and west-central Wisconsin. Merchants Bank Equipment Finance will now operate as a division of the Merchants Bank parent organization, as opposed to a wholly owned subsidiary.

Merchants Bank was founded in 1875 in Winona, Minnesota, where it remains headquartered. Merchants Bank is a member FDIC and equal housing lender. Financing is subject to approval.