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.

Brad Brolsma Announces Retirement from Merchants Bank Equipment Finance

BrolsmaBradBrad Brolsma, President of Merchants Bank Equipment Finance, has announced his retirement, effective December 31, 2016, according to Rodney R. Nelson, CEO of Merchants Financial Group, Inc. (MFGI).

Brolsma has been President of Merchants Bank Equipment Finance (MBEF), previously known as Merchants Capital Resources, since 2002. MBEF is a division of Merchants Bank. Merchants has begun the process of working with an executive search firm to fill this leadership position.

“Brad has provided exceptional leadership and MBEF has contributed significantly to our bottom line throughout his tenure,” Nelson said. “Brad will be difficult to replace. His team will miss him, as will all members of our organization.”

Brolsma said it has been gratifying to see the reach and influence of MBEF grow. The company 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 provides equipment financing options to best meet the needs of its customers across many industries, including construction, transportation, healthcare, manufacturing and food and agriculture.

“I’ve been fortunate to work with an exceptional group of professionals who are always focused on meeting and exceeding the needs of our customers and for an organization that really epitomizes the very best in community banking,” Brolsma said.

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.