Hiring your next machine tool: finding financing sources at IMTS.

Author:Lorincz, Jim
Position::IMTS 2004 - National Machine Tool Financial Corp., International Machine Tool Show

If you visit IMTSnet.com (which you should do many times between now and your September visit to IMTS 2004) and click on product category "leasing financing," you'll find a surprisingly short list of sources for machine tool financing at IMTS. The shortness of the list is somewhat misleading, however. Machine tool builders and their distributor networks have arrangements with sources of funding, know where to find them in a hurry, or, in some few cases, have their own leasing arms. A good example of the latter is Haas Automation.

In fact, more than 20 machine tool builder exhibitors at IMTS will benefit from having National Machine Tool Financial Corp.'s financing services available to them and their customers right in their own booths. That's a distinct advantage, as National Machine Tool Finance acts on its own behalf as a single-source provider of financing for leased equipment or secures other sources of financing through its network of leasing partners, according to president Robert Lang.

As a part of its service at IMTS, National Machine Tool Finance will offer machine tool exhibitors and their customers:

* Quick credit approvals

* Excel spreadsheet analysis of return on investment (ROI) of the proposed equipment acquisition

* Special financing available through machine tool manufacturer, if any

* Special terms available such as 90-day skip payment or 6-month skip payment, among others

"We're a national company with our headquarters location and credit department in Elk Grove Village, right in the Chicago area, four regional offices in major cities, and 15 direct salesmen to service our clients at the show," says Lang. Those are important advantages, as direct sales forces at all but a few of the major machine tool financing companies had been virtually eliminated during the recent devastatingly deep machine tool downturn.

It's getting easier to find financing sources as the recent pick-up in machine tool orders has attracted banks and leasing companies back into the market. What is needed in a lender, most observers agree, is the highly specialized knowledge of the machine tool and manufacturing industries that is necessary to evaluate the impact on ROI (return on investment) of the acquisition of a particular piece of equipment or software.

"Three to five years ago a wide variety of credits could be financed," says Lang. "Today, the good credits-businesses that have a good track record and have been in business for more than five years--have no...

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