Kit Menkin Leasing News
supplies businesses and consumers with information about the leasing industry. We have independent, unbiased, accurate, and fair news about leasing. Feel free to browse our site and learn everything you need to about leasing.
Friday April 4, 2003
This Border ##### Denotes Press Release (Not Written By Leasing News)
Picture from the Past-----1995---Merrilees/Fisher
“Western Association of Equipment Leasing President Jim Merrilees and Arizona Region Chair Jim B. Fisher at the Arizona meeting.
March, 1995 WAEL Regional Reporter
Classified Ads---Jobs Wanted---53 today
We have two more testimonials that we are seeking permission to print,
as they have accepted jobs through our classified ads.
There are 53 jobs wanted posted ads. They are free.
Sales Manager: Atlanta, GA
Professional. finance mgr. w/formal credit ed./ reg. vp/ secured/unsecured commercial loans/ direct end user network/equip. leasing/ structuring small,mid,big ticket transactions. 10+ years NE & SE. Have vendor servicing w/ existing and active network of accounts will bring with me. Email:AlanAustin2000@msn.com
Sales Manager: New York, NY
I have over 25 years owning an independent leasing company that specialized in truck leasing. Tow trucks, Limos, ambulances, tractors, etc.. Email:email@example.com
Sales Manager: Portland, OR. 18+ yrs w/ bank leasing company. Supervised 14-20 sales people. Willing to relocate for the proper position. Or, seeking sales position in current location (13+yrs direct sales). email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Sales Manager: Seattle, WA
Senior level sales professional w/ (20) plus experience in mid market financing & leasing. The last (8) plus years being self employed in middle market brokerage. Email:email@example.com
Senior Management: Baltimore, MD
25 year veteran of commercial and equipment leasing seeking a senior management position with leasing or asset based financing company in the southeast (Florida preferred)
Senior Management: Chicago, IL 15 yrs.of exp., w/global-vendor-programs; sales, marketing, business-development, P&L responsibilities. Seeking senior leadership-role w/captive lessor or global-leasing company. Will relocate for right opportunity. email:InternationallyAdept@hotmail.com
Senior Management: Long Island, NY
Degree Banking/Finance. 13 years leasing exp. Now prez young leasing company where promises were not met. Interested in joining established firm with future. Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior Management: Portfolio Management Consultant; 25+years experience in Collections, Customer Satisfaction, Asset Management, Recoveries, Continuous Process Improvement, Backend Revenue Generation, Cost per Collection Analysis. $5+Billion Portfolio expertise. email: email@example.com
go here for the entire Jobs Wanted list:
Tell a colleague seeking employment or a better position, to apply
here for a free ad that works ( most of the time:)
we try and make it easy. Here are other places to post
an ad ( some are free.)
Also call a recruiter who specializes in leasing executives. They also
may have other employment opportunities that may be of better
benefit in today’s economy. Call them as they are experts and make
their living by putting employer and employee together
######## Press Release ########################################
CIT Quantifies Exposure to Air Canada
LIVINGSTON, N.J., -- CIT (NYSE: CIT)
announced today its exposure in aircraft to Air Canada is approximately
USD$80 million. Air Canada filed for protection from creditors on April 1,
2003 under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act, the Canadian
CIT's exposure primarily relates to two Boeing 767 aircraft. One aircraft
is scheduled to come off-lease on June 1, 2003 for which CIT has a signed
commitment in place to re-lease the aircraft to another carrier. On the
second 767, CIT has an investment in a leveraged lease (not a tax-optimized
structure) with a remaining term of six years.
CIT Group Inc. (NYSE: CIT), a leading commercial and consumer finance
company, provides clients with financing and leasing products and advisory
services. Founded in 1908, CIT has nearly $50 billion in assets under
management and possesses the financial resources, industry expertise and
product knowledge to serve the needs of clients across 30 industries. CIT
holds leading positions in vendor financing, U.S. factoring, equipment and
transportation financing, Small Business Administration loans, and asset-based
and credit-secured lending. CIT is headquartered in New York City, with
executive offices in Livingston, New Jersey, and has approximately 6,000
employees in locations throughout North America, Europe, Latin and South
America, and the Pacific Rim. For more information, visit http://www.cit.com.
SOURCE CIT Group, Inc.
### press release ##############################################
Alan Leesmith Joins Alta Group
LONDON, -The Alta Group announces that Alan Leesmith, a chartered accountant with decades of equipment leasing and finance industry experience, has joined this international consulting agency as a principal in its European region.
In his more than 30 years in the equipment leasing industry, Leesmith has witnessed the extensive scale of its development and change. He has built a career in sales-aid (vendor) leasing. At Anglo Leasing, a leading independent sales-aid lessor in the United Kingdom, he served first as finance director and then later as managing director, helping Anglo to achieve 16 years of consecutive profit growth without making any acquisitions.
During his tenure, Anglo achieved a full public listing on the London Stock Exchange and the first AAA-rated securitization for small-ticket leases in the United Kingdom. Following the acquisition of Anglo by Woodchester Credit Lyonnais, Anglo grew to become the largest lessor in the United Kingdom’s office-equipment sector and was later acquired by GE Capital.
As an active participant in the Institute of Chartered Accountants, Leesmith served at one time on the Technical Advisory Committee, a member of the working party reviewing SSAP21 (Lease Accounting). He also is an institute adviser on professional ethics.
In 1997 Leesmith formed his own consultancy, Bavelaw Associates Ltd. It has advised numerous global equipment manufacturers and lessors on European, American and Australasian vendor leasing. Other assignments include advising on the opportunities for international taxed-based leasing through Dublin, securitization issues in the United Kingdom, leasing systems development and selection, insurance programs and raising equity and loan capital for sums ranging from £100k to US$450m.
“Alan brings a wealth of vendor leasing experience, and he is an acknowledged expert in many of the areas of equipment leasing and finance in which we do considerable client research. We are delighted to have him as part of our team,” says Derek Soper, the founding principal in the European office of The Alta Group.
Leesmith is also a founder and CEO of Lease and Finance International, a privately owned insurance agency with offices on several continents. Leesmith plans to continue in this role.
The European office of The Alta Group provides joint venture and merger and acquisition advisory services as well as strategic benchmarking, competitive positioning and market-entry consulting. They frequently advise growing manufacturers interested in pan-European vendor programs and assist in market-entry projects.
About The Alta Group
The Alta Group
011 (44) 1444 891344
Mobile (44)7711 419834
##### press release ###########################################
The war ate my homework
by By Steven Syre, Boston Globe Columnist
ISM Report: Production, New Orders Decline; Employment, Inventories Decline; Supplier Deliveries Slowing
According to the Institute for Supply Management’s March Report On Business®, economic activity in the manufacturing sector failed to grow in March, while the overall economy grew for the 17th consecutive month.
The report was issued April 1 by Norbert J. Ore, C.P.M., chair of the Institute for Supply Management™ Manufacturing Business Survey Committee and group director, strategic sourcing and procurement, Georgia-Pacific Corporation. "The manufacturing sector failed to grow in March, marking the end of four consecutive months of growth. A turn in both New Orders and Production drove the change as New Orders fell below 50 percent after six months of growth, and Production fell below 50 percent for the first time in 16 months. March wasn't a good month for manufacturing, as the sector appears to have lost its momentum. Employment continues to be a problem as the index has now been below 50 percent for 30 months."
ISM's Backlog of Orders Index indicates that order backlogs declined for the ninth consecutive month, while ISM's Supplier Deliveries Index reflects slower deliveries for the 15th consecutive month. Manufacturing employment continued to decline in March as the index remained below the breakeven point (an index of 50 percent) for the 30th consecutive month. ISM's Prices Index is above 50 percent as manufacturers experienced higher prices for the 13th consecutive month. New Export Orders grew in March for the 15th consecutive month. March's Imports Index grew for the fifth consecutive month.
Comments from purchasing and supply executives focused on war, soft demand, energy availability, and escalating prices. The war appears to have slowed demand in a number of industries, including Chemicals, Electronics, and Industrial Equipment. Issues related to energy consume resources and compress margins.
ISM's PMI declined to 46.2 percent in March, a decrease of 4.3 percentage points when compared to 50.5 in February. ISM's New Orders Index declined 6.1 percentage points from 52.3 percent in February to 46.2 percent in March. ISM's Production Index declined 9.1 percentage points from 55.4 percent in February to 46.3 percent in March. The ISM Employment Index is at 42.1 percent for March, a decrease of 0.7 percentage point when compared to the 42.8 percent reported in February.
ISM's Supplier Deliveries Index registered 53.8 percent, 0.5 percentage point higher than February's 53.3 percent. ISM's Inventories Index declined to 42.3 percent from 43.8 percent in February. ISM's Customers' Inventories Index for March is at 42 percent, a decline of 4 percentage points compared to the February reading of 46 percent. ISM's Prices Index in March is 70 percent, an increase of 4.5 percentage points from February's 65.5 percent. ISM's Backlog of Orders Index declined 7.5 percentage points, registering 41.5 percent in March compared to 49 percent in February.
ISM's New Export Orders Index registered 52 percent, down 3.5 percentage points from February's 55.5 percent. ISM's Imports Index declined from 55.4 percent in February to 52.5 percent in March.
(courtesy ELAonline.com )
ISM Names ELA’s LeaseAssistant.org “Website of Interest” for April
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) named the Equipment Leasing Association’s Lease Assistant website http://www.leaseassistant.org, its website of interest in their April edition of Just in E-Time Newsletter. Lease Assistant is an informational portal for financial decision-makers on leasing and financing equipment. The site features a checklist of questions to ask when negotiating a lease, the differences between a lease and loan and information on finding a leasing company. To visit this web site, go to: http://www.leaseassistant.org
The Just in E- Time Newsletter is distributed to members of the Institute for Supply Management. ISM is one of the most respected educational associations in the United States. ISM is a communication link with more than 45,000 purchasing and supply management professionals
( courtesy of ELAonline.com)
Hal Horowitz on UAEL
(Hal Horowitz was president of the Western Association of Equipment Lessors in 1992, working his way up the chairs of officers and activities. He was there
when the association changed its name and direction. He was also a member
until 1997-98. Today he is in the financial executive recruitment business in Southern California.)
Note: A copy of this was sent to the UAEL executive committee, staff, and other
past presidents, seeking their comment, if any. There was no response to date.
“With all due respect to Bob Rodi's involvement in UEAL (as well as to my own
memory) it seems to me that somewhere back around 1989 or 1990 WAEL put
together a long-overdue strategic planning session. This was chaired by
past president Bob Jacobson and among its committee members were Bill Grohe,
Jim Swander, myself and with apologies to those whom I cannot remember, a
handful of others. There were several meetings of this committee which
ultimately presented a wide range of recommendations to the Board for long
term growth of the Association, among which included becoming a national
organization. This was at least three years before Ray Williams became our
Executive Director. It had nothing to do with Ray's goals or personal
plans, nor for that matter with Jon Bednerik's. The ideas that emanated
from that group came from the members itself. I believe Ray was hired in
1993. It was, if I recall correctly, at the 1991 planning meeting, when I
was vice president under Bill Grohe, that we were kicking around name
changes (one of the suggested of which was World Association of Finance and
Leasing (WAFL) or something like that). Obviously, that one was rejected.
“You can check with Bill Grohe, Gordon Roberts and a few others, but I'm
relatively sure you will find that the ultimate decision to become a
national organization, and in fact, any decisions regarding the future and
the policy of WAEL/UAEL following the loss to our organization of Art
Schwartz, was entirely member driven. If Bob or any of the current members
of UAEL do not like what the Association has become, look inward, not
outward. Let them blame me and the others who were part of the leadership
of the time, and themselves more recently for not taking steps to correct
what they (rightfully or wrongfully) consider worth grousing about . Jon
and Ray were not without faults, ambition perhaps among them, but neither of
them is responsible for the condition, good or bad, of the Association
“Bob's comment that Ray Williams wanted to be Mike Fleming when he grew up is inappropriate. The Ray I and others were involved in hiring was charged
with providing an administration, not a leadership. During the time I knew
him, be became passionate about the Association and the friendships he made
and only wanted to see it prosper and do well. Whatever Ray's "concept for
growth" may have led to, the "misdirected and ineffective" leadership was
ours, not his. Ray was an employee, not a leasing professional and he
always admitted that, at least when I knew him and was involved.”
With appreciation to the men and women of our armed forces.
Hal T. Horowitz
Vice President, Financial Placements
Wingate Dunross, Inc.
30851 Agoura Road, Suite 301
Agoura, CA 91301
Phone: 818-597-3200 ext. 212
My mission is to collaborate with my clients, to further their success by
identifying professionals of uncommon ability to whom they might not
otherwise have access and who will in turn make a valuable contribution.
Chronological Response to Bob Rodi view of National Association of
Equipment Leasing Brokers:
From Legal Counsel for NAELB, Barry Marks:
“As you know, I normally steer way clear of the inter-association rivalry foolishness, but, assuming he did not intend it as an April Fool's prank, Mr. Rodi's words left me reeling:
"In addition, other than the core of experienced people in that association, I find that I have little in common with the bulk of the membership. I have also noticed that, what I would refer to as a "dangerous" group of people, are exerting a major influence over the educational programs at the NAELB. In an effort to be more diplomatic than I normally am, I will not mention any names, but when I was president of the UAEL I made it a personal mission to run these people off. I fear that they see the largely inexperienced group and the NAELB as "fresh meat". I do however, have every confidence that some of the new board members of the NAELB, people who I know and respect in this business, will either control
them or run them out of that group also."
“I guess I'm one of the old guys - I have no problem with any of our programming (maybe Bob means "Dangerous" in the Chuck Barris sense - all in his mind). Even he should admit that NAELB is the most aggressive about "running off" (kicking out) the truly dangerous – the unethical, crooked and fraudulent. We do name names...they were in and some of them were sponsoring...now they're gone.
“This is the worst aspect of association membership and cuts against the many fine UAEL past presidents, such as Bob Fisher and Chuck Brazier, who recognized that small-minded backbiting only alienates potential members. Ray Williams did not understand this, and neither (apparently) does Mr. Rodi. As long as he is identified with UAEL, it will face an unnecessary obstacle.
“The more interesting response was the anonymous unaffiliated leasing professional. If we do the math, there are about 3,000 small lessors and brokers "out there", only about 800 or so of which are in one or more of the associations...maybe 2500 or 4,000 total, maybe 600 or 1,000 "joiners, but the rough numbers still tell the tale...
“If you throw out 1,000 who are part-timers, crooks, fly-by-nights, or otherwise
undesirable and never interested in improving their lot, you still have, what? 1,000
potential members? OK, 750? MORE THAN ANY OF THE SMALLER ASSOCIATIONS AND AS MANY AS ARE IN ELA.
“So what should we be doing? Competing? Bemoaning the loss of members? How about finding out why people don't join and addressing the issues? How about joining together and approaching vendors and potential lessees with the message that they should only do business with association members - who agree to strict ethical rules and are accountable?
“Yes, it's the same message as in 1999, but I have yet to hear why it is a bad or
“It isn't about choosing your favorite association: go join whichever you like! BUT JOIN AND BE ACTIVE. And for heaven's sake, recognize that mean-spirited competition does no one any good whatsoever.
“UAEL will be just fine. So will EAEL and NAELB and ELA and all of us who make our living in the leasing profession...as long as we're professional about it!”
from NAELB President Bob Bell:
“I want to take this opportunity to apologize to Bob Rodi for not
speaking to him at any of the past NAELB annual conferences. I’m sure
he must have been in attendance or how could he have gained such insight
into the inner workings of the NAELB? I did, however, check the
attendance records for the past decade and did not see his name on the
attendee list. I’ll have to make sure we keep better records.
“It is no surprise to me that Mr. Rodi has little in common with the
bulk of the (NAELB) membership. The bulk of our membership are hard
working humble leasing professionals who realize there is much knowledge
to be gained from one another by sharing our common experiences, trials,
and tribulations. Oh, by the way, we don’t have an in crowd
“He is also correct in that we remain focused on the Broker, and
yes that does include many of us who are lessors and discounters. We
further realize that our funding sources are a crucial and integral part
of our association and many of them sit on association committees. The
current and past conference chairs are non broker members.
“A brief comment regarding Mr. Rodi’s personal mission to run these
people off is in order. While he was personally running off these
dangerous people, the NAELB was expelling individuals and firms
who jeopardize and endanger our industry by violating our strict code of
ethics. By the way, some of these persona non grata folks are
still members in good standing of other associations.
“I, for one, sit in awe of Bob’s level of technological
sophistication, warehouse lines, let alone the funding capability that
we have at LeaseNOW. After all, I’m just a humble lease broker
from Cumming, GA who buys money at 10%, sells it at 20 %, and not being a
greedy person is happy with a meager 10% profit!
“When I grow up I hope to be as sophisticated as Bob.
“Bob, I’m sure you still have your baton and service revolver, please
don’t hurt me. The devil made me write this. “
Bob Bell, CLP
(Bob Rodi is a former Baltimore policeman. There is a sense of good humor
in Mr. Bell’s e-mail, and if you know him, his voice would give this even
more of the humor in how he is wording this e-mail.
One of the things I like about Bob Rodi is that he speaks his mind. You
know where he stands. He also has a lot of knowledge to tap. It would be my suggestion to invite him as your guest to the next NAELB meeting, maybe even ask him to do a workshop. I think you will find the many good attributes that he possesses, and you might even “convert” him. editor)
Doesn’t Want to Join---Signs Name
There were many “unsigned” e-mails about why they would not join an
association. Our goal from the very beginning has been to support
all leasing associations---equally---and readers will note on our website
as well as our daily news that we make announcements of events, conferences,
and editorially chastise readers for not getting involved.
The original ten reason e-mail was submitted not for publication. It was
after e-mails and a telephone call, that we got permission to print it
as “name with held.” The sender originally meant it as a private
e-mail, didn’t want it printed, and was mixed about signing his name.
It was our persuasion to print it.
We print all sides, and here is a gentleman who signed the e-mail
about how he feels:
“Regarding the piece on "Why I won't Join a Leasing Association". The writer
hit it right on the head. I have been in the leasing and banking industry
since 1981 and my partner since 1975.
“We are funding source members of the ELA because it is the most legitimate association and it truly does provide benefits to at least the funders in our industry. However, we are not active in anything other than the ELA Funding Conference and are not members in any other association primarily because the cost does not justify the benefit.
“Part of that "cost" is the cost away from my family, friends and our
community. My wife and I are very active in the community for several
selfish reasons. It makes us feel good, sets a good example for our kids and
helps kids locally who need it the most. I don't get those benefits from any
industry boondoggle even if it takes place in Hawaii.”
Are Readers Becoming Too Judgmental?
Good hearted Jeff Taylor in his ExecutiveCaliber - Global Lease Training makes comments on many subjects, including the War in Iraq. He believes some readers are on “the fringe.”
“I think this e-mail needs to be published with my response, “ he wrote.” You may use my name. Please do not use the senders.”
The response from Jeff Taylor are in the brackets:
Jeff, I had a great deal of respect for you,((Thank you ))but your political opinions are becoming increasingly clear ((That's good.)) You, among
Hollywood’s movie stars and many recording artists ((Thank you for noticing. I was a rehearsal pianist on Broadway and my wife is a singer/actress who performed on Broadway for many years)), must be privileged(( My father made millions on Wall Street)) to intelligence that stupid commoners like myself are not.(( I'm sorry that you think of yourself that way.)) You seem to know so much more than the Bush administration its embarrassing. ((Thank you)).
I am not a republican, but I am not an anti-republican as you seem to be.(( I do not like labels but when Clinton was in charge, I took shots at
him as well)). Open your mind and you might find a President that understands and knows his limitations and allows better qualified people to
handle situations that require their expertise.(( I find this line funny since I teach people how to open their minds. ))
If you are at odds with the entire administration,((Not really. I like several of his staff including Colin, Condelezza, and Christie)) you should carefully take a look in the mirror and try to figure out how you could be so much more well informed than the U.S. military, CIA, FBI, etc., etc. ((I am not more informed. I am informed since I have friends who work as well as consult for the government including former Presidents. ))
Take me off your email list ((You always had that capability but I will do it for you.)) - I'm not sure you have anything to offer me anymore. ((I do not remember you buying my book or any of my paid services. So I am guessing that you used to enjoy reading my free stuff.)) I have plenty of stupid female friends who are anti-republicans and are equally as uneducated and close-minded about world affairs. ((This is the main reason why I personally responded to your e-mail. Your personality comes through very clearly. I have never used the word stupid about anyone. I do not want you on my list. Goodbye.))
Jeffrey Taylor, CLP
ExecutiveCaliber - Global Lease Training
2144 South 1150 East
Bountiful, UT 84010 USA
(801) 299-9932 (fax)
Operation Just Cause Yellow Ribbon Campaign
All it takes is to wear a yellow ribbon or display it on your flag poll or front door.
Please forward a copy of Leasing News to a colleague as we are trying to build
New Chief at Bombardier Lists Changes for Turnaround
####### Press Release #########################################
Bombardier Presents Recapitalization Program Featuring Equity Offering and Asset Divestitures
TORONTO---Bombardier Inc. (TSX:BBD.A)(TSX:BBD.B):
Tellier Says Emphasis on Transparency and Accountability Will
Drive Change in Corporate Culture
Financial Results for Fiscal 2003 Are Announced
-- Equity offering of at least $800 million
-- Planned divestitures including Bombardier Recreational
Products expected to raise in excess of $1.5 billion
-- Reduction of dividend
-- Change in governance structure
-- Bank covenant amended
-- Bombardier Capital to focus on only two portfolio categories
-- New accounting policies adopted to enhance investor
understanding of the Corporation's performance
-- Consolidated revenues for fiscal 2003 of $23.7 billion and net
loss of $615.2 million after non-cash special items of $1.3
billion ($959.7 million after tax)
-- Free cash flow of $801.4 million
-- Order backlog of $44.4 billion
Bombardier (TSX:BBD.A)(TSX:BBD.B) President and Chief Executive Officer Paul M. Tellier announced a major recapitalization program which includes the filing later today, with the securities regulatory authorities in Canada, of a preliminary short-form prospectus providing for the issue of Class B shares. The equity infusion will strengthen the Corporation's balance sheet and bolster working capital.
Gross proceeds from this equity offering are expected to be at least $800 million and will supplement the Corporation's working capital and be used for general corporate purposes. The securities to be offered have not been and will not be registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and may not be offered or sold in the United States, absent registration or an applicable exemption from registration requirements.
A NEW BOMBARDIER
The equity offering leads a list of initiatives designed to strengthen the company's balance sheet and refocus the Corporation on the aerospace and transportation businesses. To that end, Tellier announced Bombardier's intention to divest Bombardier Recreational Products, as well as other non-core assets.
"We will rebuild our credibility with investors with the action plan we are announcing today," said Tellier. "The sale of our recreational products business provides a good balance between our asset divestitures and the equity offering. Combined with our cost reduction programs, it gives us the financial flexibility we need going forward.
"Our story is a story of recovery. We are acting rapidly and strategically to re-energize the Corporation by strengthening our balance sheet and putting the liquidity concern and the bank covenant issue behind us.
"Rigour and consolidation are the order of the day. Tighter accountability and financial discipline are being applied across the Corporation. Bombardier today is focused on value creation," he said.
The Corporation has decided to divest its recreational products business as it is the most liquid asset in Bombardier's portfolio. The Corporation has retained UBS Warburg as financial advisors and Ogilvy Renault as its legal advisors for this transaction.
The controlling shareholder supports the Corporation's plan to unlock the value of the recreational products group at this time.
In order to help ensure the stability and continuity of this heritage asset, members of the Bombardier family have expressed an interest in participating in the process as part of an eventual group of investors seeking to acquire the recreational products business.
In view of the family's interest, the Board has formed a committee of independent directors to supervise and monitor the divestiture process, evaluate offers or other alternatives and make recommendations to the Board. The independent committee is chaired by L. Denis Desautels, former Auditor General of Canada, and composed of Jalynn H. Bennett, Andr, Desmarais, Jean C. Monty and James E. Perrella.
The committee will be responsible for ensuring that the best interests of the Corporation and all of its shareholders are served. The committee will also ensure that the process is conducted in a manner that maintains the full value of the business during the divestiture process.
The independent committee of the Board has retained Morgan Stanley as its financial advisors and McCarthy Tetrault LLP as its legal advisors.
Tellier confirmed divestment of two non-core assets already underway:
-- Defence Services
Bombardier Aerospace provides technical services for military aircraft through facilities located at Mirabel, Quebec and Bridgeport, West Virginia. It also provides pilot training for Canadian pilots and for NATO pilots and personnel from other countries in Portage la Prairie, Manitoba; Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan; and Cold Lake, Alberta. Divestiture of these activities is underway.
-- Belfast City Airport
In October 2002, Bombardier announced its intention to sell the Belfast City Airport in Northern Ireland. Prospective buyers have been identified and negotiations are ongoing.
These divestments, combined with the equity offering, are expected to generate cash in excess of $2 billion within six to nine months. Proceeds are intended to supplement the Corporation's working capital and be used for general corporate purposes.
AMENDED BANK COVENANT
Bombardier has reached an agreement with its lenders under its two main syndicated credit facilities to amend the net debt-to-capitalization ratio covenant. This demonstrates support and provides the Corporation with the flexibility to implement its recapitalization program.
DIVIDENDS ON CLASS A AND CLASS B SHARES
At its meeting on April 2, 2003, the Board re-affirmed its policy of paying dividends on Class A shares (multiple voting) and Class B shares (subordinate voting). However, the Board resolved that such dividends would be no greater than $0.09 per share (plus, in the case of the Class B shares (subordinate voting), a preferential dividend of $0.0015625 per share per annum) on an annual basis for the current fiscal year. As a result, the annual dividend per Class A and Class B share for fiscal year 2004, if approved by the Board each quarter, will be approximately one half of the dividend paid in fiscal year 2003. The Board reserves the right to modify its dividend payment policy at any time.
FURTHER CONCENTRATION FOR BOMBARDIER CAPITAL
Tellier also said the divestitures will refocus Bombardier Capital's business plan. Origination activities will now be concentrated on inventory financing and interim financing for Bombardier Aerospace regional aircraft, with limitations on the maximum amount and number of aircraft. Bombardier Capital will continue to greatly reduce its assets under management through the ongoing wind-down and sale of all its other portfolios, which is expected to generate significant cash.
The Corporation announced today it will cease origination for Bombardier Capital's railcar leasing activities. These activities consist of third-party leasing of a fleet of over 16,000 freight cars. Earlier, Bombardier announced the sale and gradual wind-down of the receivable factoring portfolios and the business aircraft financing portfolios. These processes are underway and should be completed later this year. The receivable factoring portfolio has already been reduced by 34% and the business aircraft portfolio by 24% during the last quarter. The portfolios being wound down or sold represented 55% of Bombardier Capital's assets under management as at Jan. 31, 2003.
CHANGES IN ACCOUNTING POLICIES
Bombardier has also taken steps to enhance clarity and transparency in financial reporting, as more fully described in the aerospace section.
At its meeting on April 2, 2003, Bombardier's Board approved changes in accounting policies for its aerospace programs, including the adoption of the average cost accounting method in place of the program accounting method. The changes, concurrent with significant revisions of estimates, resulted in cumulative non-cash pre-tax write-downs totalling $2.2 billion, of which $1.0 billion was recorded in fiscal 2003, and $1.2 billion relates to prior years.
"We are making these changes because we believe that this new accounting method will enhance investor understanding of our performance," said Tellier. "Although we are taking substantial write-downs, these are expected to be offset by our recapitalization initiative, which will provide us with a strengthened balance sheet to see us through this period of uncertainty."
In the context of the broader public debate around corporate governance issues, Bombardier has initiated a number of changes to enhance its governance structure.
Bombardier appointed Board member Jalynn H. Bennett as chair of the Retirement Pension Oversight Committee of the Board. This committee will oversee, review and monitor the investment of assets of the Corporation's pension plans. Mrs. Bennett sits on several boards and has extensive knowledge of pension reform. She is a member of the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan board.
The Board also made the decision to create a Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee to monitor the evolution of the corporate governance principles including the Corporation's Code of Ethics. Furthermore, the Executive Committee of the Board will be abolished.
New Board committees and changes to existing committees will take effect in June 2003, at the time of the Corporation's annual meeting of shareholders. The mission of the Human Resources and Compensation Committee and of the Audit Committee will be reviewed, and all committees will be comprised exclusively of independent directors.
On Feb. 21, 2003, Bombardier announced that former Auditor General of Canada, L. Denis Desautels, joined the Board and its Audit Committee.
"I have now been at the head of this Corporation for close to three months," said Tellier, "and, in spite of the current uncertainties, I am confident that the fundamentals of our core businesses are sound. We have good products, good people, loyal customers and good technology. We can also rely on a strong backlog of orders, which provides our manufacturing facilities with two to three years of work.
"We invented the concept of the regional jet, the product which is key to the North American airline industry's re-organization. We have taken the measures to ensure we will be ready when the business jet market picks up.
"Bombardier Transportation has become a core revenue generator and is basically a recession-resistant business. As the global market leader with a complete line of products, it has built a strong backlog.
"The new Bombardier will be made up primarily of two almost equal-sized businesses that have operational and financial complementarities and that have different product cyclicality. There are many opportunities for synergies in manufacturing, procurement, engineering and design and project management, as well as sales and administration.
"As for Bombardier Capital, we have addressed the market's concerns head on, and have put a strong professional team in place. We are managing this business in a very disciplined fashion," said Tellier.
In terms of liquidity, the Corporation confirmed that it had a total of $5.7 billion of short-term capital resources available as at Jan. 31, 2003, an increase of $898 million over the previous year.
"In looking ahead, we are taking a prudent approach to planning our activities for the year. While we will not provide formal EPS and cash-flow guidance in light of uncertainty in the markets, we are prepared to provide a business level outlook for the upcoming year.
-- Bombardier Aerospace, which is planning its production to
reflect the uncertainty in the sector, is expected to
demonstrate an improvement over fiscal year 2003 results.
Based on the current backlog, it is expected that aircraft
deliveries for fiscal 2004 will be at a level similar to those
of fiscal year 2003. The entry into service of the Bombardier
Challenger(i) 300 in the business aircraft segment and of the
Bombardier CRJ900(i) in the regional aircraft segment will
contribute to this achievement. The final outcome of the major
restructuring of key airlines will have an impact on
Bombardier's activities. However, the Corporation believes the
current business plan presents a sound course of action.
-- Bombardier Transportation's results, based on industry growth
and increased profitability in its contracts, are expected to
improve. Ongoing productivity enhancement and cost reduction
programs will contribute to this improvement along with
reinforced quality control on new product introduction.
-- Bombardier Capital (BC) will be a smaller contributor to
overall profits due to the significant reduction in its assets
FINANCIAL RESULTS FOR THE YEAR ENDED JAN. 31, 2003
Bombardier Inc. today reported consolidated revenues of $23.7 billion for the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, an increase of 8.5% over revenues of $21.8 billion the previous year. This increase is mainly due to a higher level of activity in the transportation segment and the consolidation of Bombardier Transportation GmbH (Adtranz) accounts for the full 12-month period for fiscal year 2003, compared to eight months for the previous year. This increase was also due to higher sales of outboard engines and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs). These increases were partially offset by lower revenues in the aerospace segment, mainly as a result of lower business aircraft deliveries.
Effective in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2003, Bombardier Aerospace changed its accounting policy from the program accounting method to the average cost accounting method. This is more fully described in the aerospace section. The following results reflect the retroactive application of the changes in accounting policies for the aerospace segment to all periods.
Earnings before tax (EBT) before special items(1) reached $519.6 million for fiscal 2003, compared to $1.1 billion for fiscal year 2002. Net loss for fiscal year 2003 was $615.2 million, or $0.47 per share, compared to a net income of $36.0 million, or $0.01 per share for fiscal year 2002. Before the effect of the changes in accounting policies and special items, earnings per share would have reached $0.44 for fiscal year 2003.
Bombardier's order backlog as at Jan. 31, 2003 totalled $44.4 billion, compared to $44.1 billion as at Jan. 31, 2002. In aerospace, the backlog reached $18.7 billion as at Jan. 31, 2003, compared to $23.7 billion at the end of the previous fiscal year and, in transportation, it totalled $25.7 billion at the end of the fiscal year, compared to $20.4 billion as at Jan. 31, 2002.
Analysis of results
For the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, Bombardier Aerospace had segmented revenues of $11.3 billion, compared to $12.3 billion in the previous year. This decrease is mainly due to the decline in business aircraft deliveries and the effect of the change in timing of revenue recognition for narrow-body business jets. These reductions were partially offset by higher deliveries of regional jets and sales of used business aircraft, as well as a higher effective exchange rate for the U.S. dollar compared to the Canadian dollar, resulting from the Corporation's hedging activities.
Negative EBT before special items, reflecting the changes in accounting policies, was $32.4 million for the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, compared to an EBT before special items of $721.5 million for the previous year. This decrease results mainly from lower deliveries of business aircraft.
Special items of $1.3 billion were recorded during fiscal year 2003, of which $614.7 million related to the revision of aerospace program estimates. The latter amount is included in the cumulative $2.2-billion charge discussed above. In addition, a $587.9-million charge was also recorded for the write-down of used aircraft and production inventory, as well as for anticipated losses on trade-in business aircraft and lower-than-anticipated sub-lease revenues, $67.2 million for severance and other involuntary termination costs, and $41.0 million related to the final settlement of a lawsuit and a contractual dispute. Of the $1.3 billion, $211.4 million was recorded during the second quarter and the remainder in the fourth quarter.
Aircraft deliveries totalled 298 units compared to 370 units in fiscal year 2002. The deliveries for 2002-03 include 220 regional aircraft, 77 business jets and one amphibious aircraft.
-- Segmented revenues for the fiscal year reach $9.4 billion
-- EBT reaches $309.8 million
-- New contract wins totalling $11.7 billion during the fiscal
-- Order backlog of $25.7 billion
For the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, Bombardier Transportation's segmented revenues amounted to $9.4 billion, compared to $7.0 billion for the previous year. EBT for fiscal year 2003 amounted to $309.8 million, compared to EBT before special items of $230.4 million for the year ended Jan. 31, 2002. These increases are due to the consolidation of Adtranz accounts for the full 12 months of fiscal year 2003, compared to eight months for last year, the strengthening of the euro compared to the Canadian dollar, and a higher level of activity on some contracts, mainly in Europe.
As at Jan. 31, 2003, Bombardier Transportation's order backlog totalled $25.7 billion, consisting of $19.8 billion for manufacturing operations and $5.9 billion for service businesses. This compares to $16.3 billion for manufacturing operations and $4.1 billion for service businesses, for a total of $20.4 billion as at Jan. 31, 2002. The increase in the value of the backlog reflects order intake of $11.7 billion and a $3.0-billion adjustment relating to the strengthening of the euro compared to the Canadian dollar.
Bombardier Recreational Products
-- Segmented revenues for the fiscal year reach $2.5 billion
-- EBT reaches $138.4 million
For the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, Bombardier Recreational Products' segmented revenues amounted to $2.5 billion, compared to $2.0 billion for the previous year. This increase is mainly due to higher outboard engines sales and increased deliveries of ATVs due to the expansion of the product line.
EBT reached $138.4 million for fiscal year 2003, compared to $150.3 million for the previous year. This decrease reflects a different product mix resulting from higher sales of outboard engines and ATVs, which generate lower margins than mature products. In addition, poor snow accumulation in North America, most notably in the central United States, resulted in higher levels of retail sales incentives for snowmobiles.
-- Segmented revenues for the fiscal year reach $894.9 million
-- EBT reaches $103.8 million
-- Reduction of assets under management of $2.2 billion
For the year ended Jan. 31, 2003, Bombardier Capital's segmented revenues were $894.9 million, compared to $966.8 million the previous year. This decrease is primarily due to the wind-down of the discontinued portfolios, as well as a declining interest rate environment, partially offset by additional revenues from the securitized floorplan receivable portfolios, brought on-balance sheet effective June 1, 2002. Bombardier Capital's EBT amounted to $103.8 million for fiscal year 2003, an increase over EBT before special items of $41.4 million in fiscal year 2002. This increase results from improved margins following the discontinuance of the manufactured housing and consumer finance businesses, as well as improved margins in the inventory finance businesses.
On Sept. 27, 2002, Bombardier Capital announced its decision to reduce its debt mainly through the sale and gradual wind-down of the receivable factoring and the business aircraft financing portfolios. Today, the Corporation announced its intention to cease origination for Bombardier Capital's railcar leasing activities. Bombardier Capital will focus its origination activities on inventory financing and interim financing for Bombardier Aerospace regional aircraft. Proceeds from the sale and gradual wind-down of the discontinued portfolios will be applied to the reduction of Bombardier Capital's debt.
Assets under management, before allowance for credit losses, amounted to $9.7 billion as at Jan. 31, 2003 compared to $11.9 billion as at Jan. 31, 2002. This 18.1% decrease was primarily due to the gradual wind-down of the discontinued portfolios and, in particular, the receivable factoring portfolio.
Bombardier Inc., a diversified manufacturing and services company, is a world-leading manufacturer of business jets, regional aircraft, rail transportation equipment and motorized recreational products. It also provides financial services and asset management in business areas aligned with its core expertise. Headquartered in Montreal, Canada, the Corporation has a workforce of some 75,000 people in 25 countries throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Its revenues for the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2003 stood at $23.7 billion. Bombardier trades on the Toronto, Brussels and Frankfurt stock exchanges (BBD, BOM and BBDd.F).
The Management's Discussion and Analysis and the Consolidated Financial Statements are available at www.bombardier.com.
The following backgrounders are also available at www.bombardier.com:
-- Bombardier Recreational Products
-- Belfast City Airport
-- Defence Services
-- Railcar Leasing
This press release includes "forward-looking statements" that are subject to risks and uncertainties. For information identifying legislative or regulatory, economic, climatic, currency, technological, competitive and other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements, see under the heading Risks and Uncertainties in the Management's Discussion and Analysis on the Corporation's Web site.
(1) CAUTION REGARDING NON-GAAP EARNINGS MEASURES
This release contains analyses based on the reported earnings in accordance with Canadian generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and analyses based on earnings measures, such as EBT and EBIT, that do not have a standardized meaning prescribed by GAAP and are therefore not readily comparable to similar measures prescribed by other corporations. In addition, certain figures are presented before and after special items. Special items are viewed by Management as items that do not arise as part of the normal day-to-day business operations or that could potentially distort the analysis of trends.
(i) Trademark(s) of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.
Dominique Dionne, 514/861-9481
#### Press Release #############################################
Rush Enterprises Announces the Acquisition of Peterbilt of Mobile Inc.
SAN ANTONIO----Rush Enterprises Inc. (Nasdaq:RUSHA) (Nasdaq:RUSHB), whose continuing operations includes the largest network of Peterbilt heavy-duty truck dealerships in North America, and a John Deere construction equipment dealership in Texas, today announced that it has acquired certain assets of Peterbilt of Mobile Inc., a Peterbilt dealer in Mobile, Ala.
The acquisition increases the Company's presence on the I-10 corridor and provides Rush with the exclusive rights to sell Peterbilt trucks and parts in southern Alabama, parts of western Florida, including Pensacola, and increases the Company's operations to 39 truck locations in 9 states.
The transaction was valued at approximately $1.4 million, with the purchase price paid in cash. Rush intends to operate the acquired company as a full-service Peterbilt franchise, and will begin to integrate their operations into the Rush Truck Center system immediately. Rush had revenues of $757.1 million and income from continuing operations before income taxes of $14.5 million during 2002 while, Peterbilt of Mobile Inc. had unaudited revenues of $11.9 million and an unaudited pretax loss of $453,000, for the same period.
In making this announcement, W. Marvin Rush, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Rush Enterprises Inc. stated, "This acquisition marks our continued growth into the southeastern United States. We are excited about working with the good people from Peterbilt of Mobile Inc. and look forward to offering our consistently high-quality products and services in Alabama."
Rush Enterprises operates the largest network of Peterbilt heavy-duty truck dealerships in North America and a John Deere construction equipment dealership in Texas. Its current operations include a network of dealerships located in Texas, California, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Alabama and Florida. These dealerships provide an integrated, one-stop source for the retail sale of new and used heavy-duty trucks and construction equipment; aftermarket parts, service and body shop facilities; and a wide array of financial services, including the financing of truck and equipment sales, insurance products and leasing and rentals. The Company is also discontinuing the operations of its retail farm and ranch superstore that serves the greater San Antonio, Texas area.
Rush Enterprises Inc., San Antonio
Martin A. Naegelin Jr., 830/626-5230
SOURCE: Rush Enterprises Inc.
### Press Release ##############################################
Synovus to Present at Investor Conference
COLUMBUS, Ga.---Synovus President and COO Jimmy Yancey will present at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey's 32nd Annual Institutional Conference.
The presentation will be on Monday, April 7, 2003 at 4:25 p.m. in Atlanta, Ga. A live broadcast of the presentation will be available in the Investor Relations section of www.synovus.com on the "Conference Calls and Webcasts" page. The replay will be available approximately 24 hours after the live presentation and will be accessible for 30 days.
Synovus (NYSE:SNV) is a diverse financial services holding company with more than $19.0 billion in assets based in Columbus, Ga. Synovus provides integrated financial services including banking, financial management, insurance, mortgage and leasing services through 40 affiliate banks and other Synovus offices in Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Florida and Tennessee; and electronic payment processing through an 81-percent stake in TSYS (NYSE:TSS), the world's largest third-party processor of international payments. Synovus is No. 9 on FORTUNE magazine's list of "The 100 Best Companies To Work For" in 2003. See Synovus on the Web at www.synovus.com.
Patrick A. Reynolds, 706/649-4973
### Press Release #############################################
Regions Financial Names R. Alan Deer Chief Legal Officer
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.---Regions Financial Corp. (NYSE:RF) has named R. Alan Deer chief legal officer, effective immediately.
Deer, 39, assumes responsibility for the leading financial services company's legal affairs from Samuel E. Upchurch Jr., who was recently named regional president with responsibility for Regions' banking operations throughout Alabama, the Florida Panhandle and middle and eastern Tennessee. Upchurch, formerly executive vice president, succeeded Wilbur B. Hufham, who retired in February.
"Alan is an outstanding attorney with a deep background in banking, regulatory and financial services law," said Regions Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer Richard D. Horsley. "His many years of service with Regions, both as outside counsel and as a key member of our in-house legal team, made him the natural successor to head the department."
Deer received his bachelor's degree in accounting from Auburn University in 1985. He received his law degree from the University of Alabama School of Law in 1988, where he served as a senior editor of the Alabama Law Review.
Prior to joining Regions in 1997, Deer was a partner with the law firm of Lange, Simpson, Robinson & Somerville LLP (now Adams & Reese/Lange Simpson LLP) in Birmingham. He served as head of Lange, Simpson's financial services practice group.
Deer is a member of the Alabama State Bar, Birmingham Bar Association and American Bar Association, where he serves on the Consumer Financial Services Committee of its Business Law Section.
Regions Financial Corp., with $47.9 billion in assets, ranks among the 25 largest financial services companies in the nation. Serving customers throughout the South, it provides traditional commercial and retail banking services and other financial services in the fields of investment banking, asset management, trust, mutual funds, securities brokerage, insurance, leasing and mortgage banking. Its banking affiliate, Regions Bank, offers banking services online from its Web site at www.regions.com and from more than 680 banking offices in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. Regions provides investment and brokerage services from more than 140 offices of Morgan Keegan & Co. Inc., one of the South's largest investment firms. Regions ranks on both the Forbes 500 and Fortune 500 listings of America's largest companies; its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol RF.
Regions Financial Corp.
Jenifer M. Goforth, 205/244-2823
Kristi Lamont Ellis, 205/326-7179
#### Press Release ############################################
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Parcells Will Face Familiar Opponents
Griese To Sign With Miami
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