FREE SUBSCRIPTION Includes: The Advisor Daily eBlast + Exclusive Content + Professional Network Membership: JOIN NOW LOGIN
Skip Navigation LinksHome / Blogs / Read Blog


Recapping the ELFA’s 2022 National Funding Conference

April 26, 2022, 05:00 AM

The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) held its National Funding Conference on at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago on April 12-14, 2022. At the request of Michael Toglia, Publisher of Equipment Finance Advisor, who was unable to attend, I am happy provide a recap of this very-well attended event.

In a word, impressed is how I would categorize my biggest take-away from the ELFA National Funding Conference held earlier this month. Now the disclaimer:  Everyone found this hard to believe, but this was the first ELFA National Funding Conference that I officially attended – true story. Since I cannot compare it to past years, I have asked others for their opinions. From my perspective, I would also simply describe the event as on par with the National Convention, but without the programming and multiple diversions. The National Funding Conference was without a doubt an uplifting experience on multiple levels. The energy and the laser like focus on “Funding” by all attendees are just a few of the impressions I came away with from this event.

Here are some statistics from Amy Vogt, Vice President, Communications & Marketing of the ELFA in terms of attendance and exhibitors (mostly funders):

  • 2018: 678 attendees, 66 exhibitors
  • 2019: 634 attendees, 67 exhibitors
  • 2020 and 2021: Conference not held due to COVID
  • 2022: 700 attendees, 67 exhibitors along with over 80 booths, suites and meeting rooms running concurrently during the conference

To make sure my impressions were not just lone impressions, I reached out to several attendees the following week to get their take.

Spencer Thomas, CEO, KLC Financial
“I found this year’s funding conference to be filled with enthusiasm, wisdom, and many new capital sources to consider. I forgot how integral this conference is and I missed the ELFA energy. Fantastic use of time and so glad we are back on track!”

Lisa Ramirez, VP, Business and Professional Development, ELFA
“This was one of our biggest Funding Conferences ever. The attendees I spoke with were so excited to be networking and doing business together again in person. It’s been a long three years since the last Funding Conference and it was great to welcome the ELFA community back to Chicago!”

Don Hansen, CEO, Regents Capital
“While the pace was frenetic, the conference had an amazing energy. You can see our industry in action and it’s exciting to be a part of it.”

Sam Cristee, Managing Director, CIBC Commercial Banking and Specialty Finance
“There was a lively energy among conference attendees this year. Everyone seemed eager to reconnect with colleagues, meet new funding sources and take part in productive conversations. It was great to be back.”

Patrick Hoiby, CEO, Equify
“As a first-time attendee I was struck by the wide variety of funders in the marketplace and the high amount of professionalism and knowledge these companies possess. I heard some incredible success stories from humble beginnings, which are rarely heard, that are a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit that is alive in our industry.”   

The attitudes of the attendees were generally optimistic about new business volume, but that has always been a trademark of the leasing industry. They also felt fairly certain that the next nine months will have several interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve and are already adding these increases into their forward-looking pricing practices.

In conclusion, I’ve come to one big takeaway – the ELFA National Funding Conference is not one to miss. I know I will be there in the future. Besides being an intense working conference of funding sources and syndicators, this conference is a fantastic industry barometer. See you there next year!

Bob Rinaldi, CLFP
President | Rinaldi Advisory Services
Bob Rinaldi is a lifelong entrepreneur with a sizable history of success in banking and commercial equipment finance.

A forward-thinking, innovative Finance Executive, Bob has amassed a solid background in assessing organizational needs, developing solutions, supporting implementations and delivering results. During his tenure, Bob guided multiple businesses through profitability and scalability to eventual acquisition, and as a founder of ILC (Information Leasing Company) he helped grow the organization to the fifth-largest bank-owned leasing company in the United States.

Currently President of Bob Rinaldi, LLC, Bob provides advisory services to independent lessors, banks, industry service providers, manufacturers and international firms entering the US equipment finance marketplace.

His tenure in the commercial equipment leasing and finance industry has shaped Bob’s non-traditional approach to envisioning, building and implementing a business model, developing a growth strategy or guiding crisis/problem resolution.

A growth strategist first and foremost, Bob’s specialties include: merger and acquisition planning, improving enterprise value, corporate strategy, process management, tactical design, marketing, new product development, information systems and international expansion.

As an international speaker and a published writer, Bob travels the world sharing his insight and expertise, advising leaders to prepare for shifts in the traditional business environment and to secure their corporation’s place at the forefront of their industry.

Rinaldi can be found on LinkedIn and on his website
Comments From Our Members

You must be an Equipment Finance Advisor member to post comments. Login or Join Now.