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Job opening in New England

In this position, you will develop and maintain relationships with lease brokers, leasing companies, equipment vendors and direct lessees throughout New England. Must be knowledgeable in indirect/third party transactions ranging from $15K and up and have in-market experience. Please apply on-line at and view posting 5245.

At M&T Bank, we provide an exciting and challenging work environment where performance and innovative thinking are encouraged and rewarded at every level.
With over 700 branches, your career can travel as far as you want to take it!

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


Correction: Technical Error---
    Classified Ads--Operations
Whatever Happened to...
Mike Berke
    Yozons reaches 14,000 customers
        Classified Ads---Help Wanted
Paul Menzel, CLP:
FTC Investigation of NorVergence Funders
    Sales makes it Happen
    --- "Morale Buster"
China Leasing Sector Faces Hurdles to Growth
    2005 State of the Industry Webinar 12/01
        Willis Completes Regulatory Filings
De La Rue Cash/Relational, LLC
    GE Energy Financial $24MM Chile
        Lightyear Completes Baker Tanks Deal
CIGI- Acquisition of Fleet Plan LLC
    News Briefs---
        You May Have Missed---
Sports Briefs---
    "Gimme that Wine"
        Today's Top Even in History
This Day in American History
    American Football Poem

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a "press release"

Correction: Technical Error---

Tuesday's version of Leasing News was not posted until 10am, California time, due to a technical error.

Readers, who received the wrong edition, are available to view Yesterday's edition at:



Classified Ads--Operations

Orange County, CA.
Operations/Credit Manager with 15 Years Experience, Middle & Large Ticket, initiated policies for Patriot Act and Sarbanes Oxley, Team Motivator.

East Windsor, NJ.
Skilled Manager in credit, collections, training, documentation, policy and procedure, lease and finance operations. Get results and keep the customer coming back.

New York, NY.
10+ years in equipment leasing/secured lending. Skilled in management & training, documentation, policy and procedure development & implementation, portfolio reporting. Strong work ethic.

Wayne, NJ
20+ heavily experienced collection/recovery VP looking to improve someone's bottom line. Proven, verifiable track record. Knowledge of all types of portfolio. Will relocate

For a full listing of all "job wanted" ads, please go to:

To place a free "job wanted" ad, please go to:



Whatever Happened to...
Mike Berke

Senior Vice President (Retired) Eaton Financial Corporation/AT&T Capital Corp.

Author- Selling Equipment Leasing- Amacom Books,

American Management Association

Mike Berke and son Adam on recent trip to Florida

"After twenty-five years or so in the street, I retired from active engagement in 1991. For the past fourteen years I've done some consulting, helped grow a start-up, and most recently began a new career as an author.

"Some out there might remember my first book, "Selling Equipment Leasing," published by the Amacom Division of the American Management Association in 1994. That text is no longer in print but can be found occasionally at and other web resellers. Aside from the enjoyment of writing, I'm also an avid reader -mostly popular fiction (similar to my life in the leasing business). Thusly, about eighteen or so months ago I undertook the task of writing a novel. The book is almost as long as the RFP's required by major corporations or government agencies seeking to lease ten thousand dollars worth of equipment (354 pages in triplicate). The hero, Bobby Cole, is a bartender accidentally turned bodyguard whom eventually winds up confronting a faction of the Russian underworld in Brooklyn. According to my claque of volunteer readers the writing seems to be pretty good. Presently, an agent is working diligently to bring the work to publication. If you think closing leasing deals is tough, try selling a novel sometime. As a matter of fact, try writing one, it's a head-bender and a half.

"For those who might remember the name, but aren't sure from where, I began by selling, renting and leasing Allis-Chalmers materials handling equipment in the mid-sixties. From there I migrated directly into the business with Continental Leasing Corp. of Bedford, Ma. Due to the proclivity of Lessors to ebb and flow with the equipment and capital markets compounded by the ramifications of good old tax legislation, the rest of my career ebbed and flowed along with them, fortunately staying above water most of the time myself. Some of my employers along the way were The Bank of Virginia, Leasco, Industralease, Sussex Leasing Corp., and finally Eaton Financial Corporation/AT&T Capital Corp. I'm most thankful for having worked for and with several industry leaders and legends, including Saul Steinberg, Harvey Granat and Paul Gass. If you want a life-challenge, try satisfying those guys with your production. Trust me, it ain't gonna happen. Reaching the top of their organizations is leasing Mecca. Doesn't get better than that.

"In the event someone wants to contact me, my email address is However, I find that despite the closeness and camaraderie of the scads of leasing folks that served on my leasing teams over the years, there's little communication amongst us as time goes by. I can only hope they're too busy doing deals and prospering to socialize. I know if I was still out there takin' care of business, I wouldn't want to talk to me either.

"Lastly, thank you Kit Menkin for the opportunity to share some thoughts for old time's sake. Regards and best wishes to all, Mike Berke"



Yozons reaches 14,000 customers -- many leasing and lending firms

Electronic Signature Boom

"It's been a while since we last talked about Yozons and our sales to GE Capital's equipment leasing business. GE was our first, but we now have over 14,000 customers worldwide. It has been an incredible journey that's turned us from a mom & pop into a business with partners across the country.

"We've experienced our greatest growth since 2004 when the business community began to return to "normal" after 9/11 and the dotcom fiasco. I know you've not kept track, but while our Signed & Secured platform has matured and carries a large customer base, our offering is where our latest, greatest technology resides, and it's where our biggest growth now resides.

"I don't think we've hit many in the leasing field yet, but we have a large number of small and mid-sized lenders, as well as those who generate sales that are then handed over to the financing companies to pay for their products and services. This includes retail sales financing, student loan consolidation and even mortgage apps. Our new technology lets prospects sign applications and financing contracts online, initialing and signing right inside the contracts. We do a mix of sales-generated forms sent to customers, online forms where customers sign-up while visiting a web site, as well as integration with existing CRM/sales systems that securely post the loan information so that their customers can then sign completed docs online.

"I hope all is well with you. I'm happy to see that Leasing News appears to be going strong, and I enjoyed some of the archived letters about Bob Rodi, an acquaintance from years past who talked a good story about online leases, but never seemed to do a thing about it himself.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all."

Best regards,



David A. E. Wall

Chief Executive Officer
Yozons, Inc.
Kirkland, Washington USA
Tel 425.822.4465
Fax 425.827.9415
Cell 425.985.6519

Secure document delivery and electronic signature services Spam-free, virus-free business private network Proven by the Fortune 500 and over 14,100 customer accounts Comply with the security, privacy and electronic signature laws of HIPAA, GLB, 21 CFR Part 11, SOX and ESIGN



Classified Ads---Help Wanted

Documentation Manager

Equipment Leasing
Documentation Manager
Walnut Creek, CA

Manage all aspects of the lease documentation unit. Requires a BA/BS; 7+ years of leasing and contract experience; Click here for detailed description & resume submission info.

Equipment Finance & Leasing Representative

Job opening in New England

In this position, you will develop and maintain relationships with lease brokers, leasing companies, equipment vendors and direct lessees throughout New England. Must be knowledgeable in indirect/third party transactions ranging from $15K and up and have in-market experience. Please apply on-line at and view posting 5245.

At M&T Bank, we provide an exciting and challenging work environment where performance and innovative thinking are encouraged and rewarded at every level.
With over 700 branches, your career can travel as far as you want to take it!


Job opening in
Baltimore/Virginia Region

In this position, you will develop and maintain relationships with lease brokers, leasing companies, equipment vendors and direct lessees throughout Baltimore/Virginia Region. Must be knowledgeable in indirect/third party transactions ranging from $15K and up and have in-market experience. Please apply on-line at and view posting 4044

At M&T Bank, we provide an exciting and challenging work environment where performance and innovative thinking are encouraged and rewarded at every level.
With over 700 branches, your career can travel as far as you want to take it!



Paul Menzel, CLP : FTC Investigation of NorVergence Funders

The coverage of the Federal Trade Commission investigation of NorVergence Funders has been well covered here, with all sides given to the story.

Leasing News has posted three editorials, congratulating the parties who settled, calling for others to do the same, and to realize the "politics" of the issue, and as important, how the internet had changed equipment leasing news, plus the legal professional as much information, documents, and research is shared instantly and for free---as Randy Brook, FTC Senior Attorney commented:

"I can say I agree with the opinion about the value of the internet to attorneys... speaking up for their behalf, not feeling they are alone, or having to re-invent or discover rulings and facts, ( and ability to pool resources) has certainly changed the playing field."

The only encouraging e-mail about the Leasing News editorial and the FTC investigation has come from Paul Menzel, CLP, Senior Vice-President, Pacific Capital, who has also been very active in several leasing associations, including the Equipment Leasing Association and United Association of Equipment Leasing:

"The story about the FTC investigation of deceptive practices in the small ticket leasing segment should be given serious consideration by all in our industry. NorVergence has exposed the leasing industry to more regulatory scrutiny than in the past.

" Although there is plenty of blame to spread around to all parties concerned, not the least of which is the fraudulent but now bankrupt vendor, the Enron motivated demand for transparency in transactions has arrived at our shore. It is imperative that we rise to the challenge and self regulate our practices to meet the highest of ethical standards.

"The leasing industry is good for the US economy and has provided a good living for those of us who participate in it. Let's not allow greedy practices by a few ruin it for the vast professional and ethical majority."

Best regards,

Paul J. Menzel, CLP

Senior Vice President

Community Lending Group

P.O. Box 60607
Santa Barbara, CA 93160-0607
1 South Los Carneros Road
Goleta, CA 93117
Dir Ph# (805)560-1650

This was received on November 16 th , and Leasing News asked the following leaders of their companies for a comment, a reaction, or view point of Paul Menzel's e-mail to Leasing News:

Patrick Byrne, Balboa Capital
Dwight Galloway, Netbank
Terey Jennings, Financial Pacific
Don Meyerson, BSB Leasing
Jerry Newell, Bank of the West
Ira Romoff, ICB Leasing
Gary Shivers, Marlin Leasing
Kathie Shuman, TCF Financial

Perhaps the e-mails are sitting somewhere, but the point is, how many other "leaders" of the equipment leasing industry agree or disagree with Paul Menzel:

"It is imperative that we rise to the challenge and self regulate our practices to meet the highest of ethical standards.

We hope it does not happen again in the same large magnitude that hit 46 leasing firms and 11,000 lessees.

As Paul Menzel, CLP, puts it,"The leasing industry is good for the US economy and has provided a good living for those of us who participate in it. Let's not allow greedy practices by a few ruin it for the vast professional and ethical majority."

The large leasing companies faced it and made a decision: CIT Financial, GE Capital, US Bancorp, Wells Fargo, to name a few.

Leasing News would like to hear from its readers on this subject.




Sales makes it Happen--- "Morale Buster"

(This is from Hawaii, where the writer has taken his family for a vacation.

We appreciate his time to continue his Wednesday weekly column. Editor)

Sales Make it Happen

Morale Busters

Anyone who has ever lead a team of employees, or an organization, knows the feeling of doing or saying something that deflates the morale of an employee or an entire team. This can happen in any segment of the business, but the sales organization is particularly vulnerable to morale deflation from well-intentioned - and old style - reward programs.

The natural tendency of most sales managers is to reward top performers. Elite salespeople often receive large bonuses, free trips and other rewards in recognition of their superior performance. While it is critical to recognize and reward extraordinary sales performance, doing so at the exclusion of a reward program for improved performance, even by the least productive, but willing performers, can devastate the morale of a sales team.

When managing a team of sales professionals, it is well advised for managers to become familiar with Constraint Theory. A simple example is an easy way to explain the theory. If you are coaching a team of Girl Scout runners, and your team is racing against four other teams of girl scouts, at what precise moment does the winning team of scouts win the race? The answer: When the last scout on the winning team crosses the finish line.

The fastest team in the race, then, is as fast as it's slowest runner. To create an even faster racing team, an inexperienced coach might be tempted to spend the majority of coaching time on the team's fleetest runners. Constraint Theory teaches that improvement occurs only when constraints are eased or eliminated. It may be true that additional coaching might help fast runners become even faster, but coaching the slowest members of the team, and gaining even moderate improvement in their performance, will result in an overall faster team performance!

Neglecting what someone once called the "mighty middle" can be disastrous for a company. Not only does the company's attrition rate increase dramatically as middle performers sense that they are being ignored, but competitors gain an opportunity to develop these experienced salespeople who, after all, had the self-confidence and motivation to seek out employers who value their potential.

Becoming familiar with Constraint Theory is important for any sales manager. Understanding the theory brings sales managers to the realization that the only thing worse than losing all your top talent is losing your "mighty middle." Working hard to improve the less talented, less productive - but willing - team members will make the most difference in the team's overall performance.

--- from the desk of a retired, successful leasing company president.




China Leasing Sector Faces Hurdles to Growth-

ExecsNew Kerala (India)

(Courtesy of ELTnews)

"...catching up to the United States, where lease financing accounts for over 30 percent of all capital formation."

Chinese executives attending an industry conference Tuesday said that while several hurdles remain in the Chinese leasing industry, the country could have one of the world's largest leasing industries in as little as three years if the government makes some key adjustments to its regulatory framework and if state firms take more responsibility for improving their performance.

Currently, the Chinese government has several different agencies regulating the leasing industry, which makes compliance difficult and confusing for firms. Executives also say the federal, local, and provincial authorities responsible for enforcing government tax regulations do not fully understand those rules or how the industry works. Yu Kaiqi, chief executive of Shanghai Yuantong Finance Leasing Co. and vice chairman of the Shanghai Leasing Association, says these regulatory hurdles are keeping China, where lease financing makes up only 2 percent of all capital formation, from catching up to the United States, where lease financing accounts for over 30 percent of all capital formation.

The government is currently working to streamline its regulation of the leasing industry, but it could be years before changes are implemented. Don Chan, director of DAYE International Leasing Co., says the leasing industry will also improve as Chinese companies become increasingly accountable to shareholders.



2005 State of the Industry Webinar - December 1st


The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation will present the 2005 State of the Industry webinar on Thursday, December 1, 2005. This informative web-based seminar will discuss the industry's outlook, where the opportunities and challenges lie, and what's behind the numbers in ELA's Survey of Industry Activity.

Developed by the Equipment Leasing and Finance Foundation and sponsored by SAP America, Inc. and Accenture, the 2005 State of the Industry Report combines the analysis of the ELA Survey of Industry Activity with the perspectives of industry leaders and experts to identify trends impacting the industry and their potential implications for the future. In addition to evaluating performance by both lessor type and transaction size, this year's Report assesses some of leasing's most influential drivers (including the economy, competition, funding access, and accounting and legislative issues) and how these drivers are changing the industry. This web session presents highlights from the 2005 Report. New this year: the Report and this session include profiles of several successful lessors and how their "lessons-learned" can be applied across the industry.

Get answers to these and other questions:

. Where will future new business opportunities come from?
. What are the internal and external business challenges leasing organizations must face?
. How to react to the "middle market squeeze" and the "large ticket slump."
. Where are the profitable/unprofitable sectors of the business?

Time of Web Seminar (depending upon your time zone):

1:30 pm - 3:30 p.m. Eastern
12:30 pm. - 2:30 p.m. Central
11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Mountain
10:30 am - 12:30 pm Pacific

Panelists include:

David S. Wiener, GE Capital Markets Services, Inc., Matthew Harvey and President Charles Wendel of Financial Institutes Consulting, and Foundation Executive Director Lisa A. Levine, CAE.

To register, please go here:


### Press Release ###########################

Willis Lease Finance Completes Regulatory Filings

SAUSALITO, Calif.-----Willis Lease Finance Corporation (NASDAQ:WLFCE), a leading lessor of commercial jet engines, today reported it has filed its amended Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004, amended Forms 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2005 and June 30, 2005 and its Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2005.

As previously reported, the Company did not file its 10-Q for the third quarter on or before the due date. Consequently, the Company received a staff determination letter from Nasdaq on November 22, 2005, indicating that the Company failed to comply with the filing requirement for continued listing set forth in Nasdaq Marketplace Rule 4310(c)(14), and that its common stock was subject to delisting. With the completion of its filings today, the Company believes it has satisfied the requirements for continued listing. Following Nasdaq's final determination of compliance, the Company expects its ticker symbol will drop the E designation and revert to WLFC. For detailed disclosure on the third quarter results, investors are encouraged to review the financial information in the 10-Q now available on the Company's website,

About Willis Lease Finance

Willis Lease Finance Corporation leases spare commercial aircraft engines, rotable parts and aircraft to commercial airlines, aircraft engine manufacturers and overhaul/repair facilities worldwide. These leasing activities are integrated with the purchase and resale of used and refurbished commercial aircraft engines.

Willis Lease Finance Corporation Monica J. Burke Chief Financial Officer 415-275-5100


### Press Release ###########################

De La Rue Cash Systems Inc., Relational, LLC, Enter Financing Partnership to
Drive Cash Handling Innovation for Financial Institutions

ROLLING MEADOWS, Ill.----- Leading North American provider of solutions spanning the acquisition, disposition and financing of technology to offer complete array of lease financing options to De La Rue customers.

Relational, LLC, one of North America's largest independent technology financing and solutions providers, has entered into a partnership with De La Rue Cash Systems Inc. to provide lease financing services to De La Rue customers. De La Rue is a world-leading provider of cash handling technology, commercial security printing and other solutions that ensure secure transactions for financial institutions, governments and retailers.

"Leasing is a financing option that makes De La Rue solutions more affordable for financial institutions as they continue to invest in initiatives that automate cash handling and heighten security in their branches," said Chris T. Reagan, De La Rue Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing. "The innovative financing solutions offered by Relational will enable De La Rue's growing customer base to more quickly realize the impact of automating manual tasks, freeing their frontline to execute their retail banking strategies and, ultimately, deliver a fantastic banking experience to their clients."

Jeffrey H. Ehlers, CEO of Relational, LLC adds, "This strategic agreement represents an excellent opportunity for Relational to partner with a world-class solutions provider, and also improves Relational's presence in the rapidly growing financial marketplace. We are pleased to be able to provide De La Rue's customers throughout the U.S. and Canada with flexible leasing solutions to further enhance the benefits and transaction productivity improvements of De La Rue solutions."

De La Rue is a respected, proven company in the financial marketplace that works closely with organizations, such as the Bank Administration Institute (BAI), to identify ways to help financial institutions deliver a high-quality client experience and grow their businesses.

De La Rue's Chris T. Regan continued, "One way to enhance the client experience is through implementing cash handling solutions that increase employee productivity and accuracy, freeing time and changing their focus from cash to their clients. This translates into greater security and lower operational costs for financial institutions, as well as a higher level of client service and employee satisfaction."

As a leading independent technology solutions provider, Relational, LLC offers flexible leasing options on all types of new and used desktop, server, storage and voice & data communications technology. The company's integrated acquisition, finance and disposition services generate insight to help customers save money and maximize their IT budgets, whether they buy or lease.

About Relational, LLC

Relational, LLC, is a leading provider of independent solutions spanning technology acquisition, financing and disposition allowing users to gain technology portfolio insight and maximize their IT budgets whether they buy or lease. Founded in 1990, the company now manages more than 15,000 individual lease schedules covering $1 billion in equipment. Clients served include Fortune 2,000 and mid-market companies across all industries. For more information, contact Relational at: 3701 Algonquin Road, Suite 600, Rolling Meadows, Illinois 60008; Phone 847-818-1700; Fax 847-818-1711;;

About De La Rue Solutions

De La Rue provides accurate, efficient and secure cash handling solutions, helping financial institutions shift their frontline focus from cash to clients, freeing time to provide a better banking experience to clients and to execute their retail banking strategies. De La Rue is also the world's largest commercial security printer and papermaker, involved in the production of over 150 national currencies and a wide range of security documents such as passports, fiscal stamps and traveler's checks. De La Rue employs over 6,200 people across 31 countries and has annual revenue in excess of $1 billion. The Company is a member of the FTSE 250. Its ordinary shares are listed with the UK Listing Authority and trade on the market for listed securities on the London Stock Exchange under the symbol DLAR. For further information visit De La Rue at

Relational, LLC Michelle Griffin, 847-818-1700 or De La Rue Cash Systems Robin Robison, 630-577-1025


### Press Release ###########################

GE Energy Financial Services, Growing Internationally, Forms Power Transmission Line Partnership with Abengoa in Chile

SANTIAGO, Chile--Growing in international markets with strong investment frameworks, GE Energy Financial Services announced today that it has formed a partnership with Abengoa -- the leading Spanish engineering, bioenergy, environmental services and IT group -- to own power transmission lines in Chile.

GE Energy Financial Services will acquire an 80 percent equity interest in the partnership for $24.4 million. Abengoa will hold the remaining 20 percent. The partnership will own three 220kV transmission lines, built and previously owned by Abengoa, spanning 295 kilometers (183 miles) in Chile. Abengoa will continue as lead manager of the three transmission line companies: the Crucero-El Abra line, with a capacity of 150MW, feeding power from the main northern grid to CODELCO's El Abra copper mine; the Santa Barbara-Trupan line, with a capacity of 450MW, transmitting power from the Pangue hydroelectric plant to the central grid; and the Ralco-Charrua line, with a capacity of 570MW, carrying power from the Ralco hydroelectric plant to the central grid.

"Abengoa's operating experience and Chile's positive environment for energy investment, more than a decade after the privatization of the country's electric utility industry, have enabled this transaction," said Tony Shizari, Managing Director at GE Energy Financial Services. "Chile is an attractive growth target for our investment capital, particularly in established operations such as these three transmission lines."

Abengoa spokesperson Antonio Merino Ciudad, director of international structured finance, said: "This partnership combines the management and financial strengths of two leading international energy groups, and enables Abengoa to use the sale proceeds for further development in the Chilean power transmission sector. We look forward to exploring additional opportunities with GE Energy Financial Services."

Abengoa was advised by BNP Paribas and the Urenda, Rencoret, Orrego y Dorr law firm. GE Energy Financial Services was advised by the Claro y Cia law firm.

About Abengoa

Abengoa, a listed industrial and technology company with stock capital in excess of 657 million euros (31/12/2004), provides solutions for Sustainable Development, the Information and Knowledge Society, and the Creation of Infrastructures. It currently operates in four large fields: Bioenergy, where it is the world's No. 2 bioethanol producer; Environmental Services, where it is leader in Europe in certain segments of the industrial waste market; Information Technologies, where it is one of the main role-players at international level, with operations in Europe, the Americas and Asia; and Industrial Engineering and Construction, where it is leader in Spain and Latin America. (

About GE Energy Financial Services

GE Energy Financial Services, based in Stamford, Connecticut, invests about $3 billion annually in the world's most capital-intensive industry, energy. With more than $10 billion in assets, GE Energy Financial Services offers structured equity, leveraged leasing, partnerships, project finance and broad-based commercial finance to the global energy industry from wellhead to wall socket. For more information, visit

About GE

GE (NYSE:GE) is Imagination at Work -- a diversified technology, media and financial services company focused on solving some of the world's toughest problems. With products and services ranging from aircraft engines, power generation, water processing and security technology to medical imaging, business and consumer financing, media content and advanced materials, GE serves customers in more than 100 countries and employs more than 300,000 people worldwide. For more information, visit

GE Stamford, CT (USA) Andy Katell, 203-961-5773 OR Abengoa Madrid, Spain Cristina Poole, +34-902-33-55-99 OR BNP Paribas Madrid, Spain Julio Carlavilla, +34-91388-8042


### Press Release ###########################

Lightyear Fund Completes Acquisition of Baker Tanks, Inc.

NEW YORK--Lightyear Capital LLC ("Lightyear"), a private equity firm that focuses on financial services, today announced that on November 23, 2005, The Lightyear Fund, L.P. completed its acquisition of Baker Tanks, Inc. ("Baker"), the leading liquid and solid containment equipment rental and leasing services company. Lightyear previously announced a definitive purchase agreement to acquire Baker on October 17, 2005. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

"We think Baker is uniquely poised to take advantage of the highly-fragmented and fast- growing liquid and solid containment equipment rental and leasing industry" said Donald B. Marron, chairman and chief executive officer of Lightyear. "The Company's growing product suite and close relationships with major corporations eager to consolidate their purchasing using fewer vendors provide Baker, in our opinion, with a distinct edge over the competition."

Mr. Marron concluded, "We are confident in Baker's seasoned management team and look forward to supporting them as we partner in leading Baker through its next phase of growth."

Commenting on the closing, Bryan Livingston, chief executive officer of Baker, said, "Working with Lightyear is a great opportunity for our company. We feel Lightyear's financial services expertise and value-added approach will immediately assist us with our growth plans both organically and through future acquisitions."

Lightyear spearheaded an investment team comprised of the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, a leading institutional investor in Canada, Goldman Sachs Mezzanine Partners III and Baker's existing management team.


Lightyear Capital LLC is a New York-based private equity investment firm that primarily makes control investments in mid-sized companies within the financial services industry. Lightyear currently manages The Lightyear Fund, L.P., a $751 million private equity fund formed in 2001. Lightyear is led by its investment committee whose head is Donald B. Marron, former chairman and CEO of PaineWebber Group, Inc., and senior members David W. Glenn, Stewart K.P. Gross, Richard J. Sterne, and Mark F. Vassallo. Lightyear's senior investment professionals have an average of more than 20 years of financial services experience and possess a range of private equity investment and transaction experience and personal relationships established throughout their careers as experts and/or leaders within the financial services industry.

For more information, please visit


Baker, an industry pioneer founded over 60 years ago, has emerged as the market leader in the liquid and solid containment equipment rental and leasing industry. Baker has enjoyed 12 consecutive years of revenue growth and is well positioned to expand its market share within the highly fragmented and fast-growing $2 billion liquid and solid containment market. Baker maintains a diverse fleet of over 15,300 units and provides liquid and solid containment rental and leasing solutions through its national network of 74 locations to a diverse customer base operating across numerous industries including industrial and environmental services, environmental remediation, oil and gas, construction, refinery, chemical, transportation, and power.

For more information, please visit


The Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec is a financial institution that manages funds primarily for public and private pension and insurance plans. As at December 31, 2004, it held CA$102.4 billion of net assets. The Caisse invests in the main financial markets as well as in private equity and real estate. The institution partners with dynamic companies in various sectors, offering them a full range of debt and equity financing products. As at December 31, 2004, the private equity portfolios held more than 600 investments in funds and companies, for CA$10.2 billion of net assets.

For more information, please visit


### Press Release ###########################

Coach Industries Group -CIGI- Announces Acquisition of Fleet Plan LLC

COOPER CITY, Fla.----Coach Industries Group, Inc. ("Coach") (OTCBB:CIGI), which offers an array of financial services including insurance products to commercial fleet operators, today announced the acquisition of Fleet Plan LLC (Fleet Plan,, a Coral Springs, FL based leasing company focused on servicing commercial fleet operators in the Daily Rental markets.

Francis O'Donnell, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Coach, commented, "As we continue to evolve into a financial services organization, the acquisition of Fleet Plan, LLC will add significant depth to the product offerings provided by Coach to commercial fleet operators. In addition to providing the ability to cross sell our core lease finance products, contract settlement and payroll services, and specialty insurance products to commercial fleet operators in the Daily Rental market, an expanded market for Coach, Fleet Plan represents a $50 million annual lease portfolio opportunity. Although we can make no assurances, we believe the acquisition of Fleet Plan will be accretive to earnings in fiscal year 2006."

"The Fleet Plan acquisition has also enabled Coach to strengthen and expand the substantial relationships we enjoy with several financial institutions, including Daimler Chrysler Services and Bank of America," stated O'Donnell.

About Coach Industries Group, Inc.

Coach Industries Group, Inc. (OTCBB:CIGI) ("Coach"), is a holding company focused on providing financial services and the manufacturing of luxury limousine and specialty vehicles to Commercial Fleet Operators.


### Press Release ###########################

News Briefs----

Upbeat Signs Hold Cautions for the Future

Gold's New Luster Puzzles Traders

Sales of New Homes Jump 13% in October

U.S. raises mortgage limit to $417,000

Sales Climb at Retailers on Internet

Treasuries fall after Consumer Confidence and Home Sales Rise

New Orleans Launches Free Wireless

Microsoft Stands by Vista Ship Dates

Plains' highways reopen after blizzard

Multipartner deal means 'Idol' will air through 2011



You May Have Missed

Moves made now will pay off next April



Sports Briefs----

Bly blames Harrington for Mariucci's departure

Manning Has Learned the Benefits of Sharing

Rolling Stones to perform at Super Bowl halftime in Detroit

Viva pro sports? Vegas makes play for team



"Gimme that Wine"

$6 Billion Generated for New York's Economy by the Grape, Grape Juice and Wine Industries

Two Unknowns from the Rhone Go West-Eric Asimov

Bonny Doon's Randall Grahm--Adding panache to the grenache

Burgundy on a Beautiful Autumn Day

If you want to know if you got a value for your wine, or what the wine price is today, go to Type in the vintage (year) and name of the producer with wine type or geographic area, such as 1995 Chateau Lynch Bages Pauillac. Even 1995 Lynch Bages will work, or 1999 Viader



Today's Top Event in History

1931-The Joy of Cooking is published, perhaps the most popular all-purpose cookbook, self-published by Irma Rombauer (1877-1962-her son by the way started Rombauer Winery in Napa making outstanding wine.) Rombauer's book was a comforting voice for cooks during the Depression, and the book grew into an institution. The first commercial edition of the book appeared in 1936, and it offered a revolutionary "action format" (chronologically ordered ingredients followed by instructions) now commonplace in cookbooks. In reality, she was not a cook, and most of the recipes she collected from friends and others, and wrote in a style for people who were not cooks.

The numerous editions overseen by Rombauer and later her daughter and grandson sold more than 14 million copies.



This Day in American History

    1729 ---Birth of Samuel Seabury, first bishop of the American Protestant Episcopal Church. (Following the American Revolution, Seabury helped formulate the constitution which made the American Protestant Episcopal Church independent and autonomous from the Church of England.)
    1782-The Articles of Peace between Great Britain and the U.S., which were to end America's War of Independence, were signed at Paris, France . The refined and definitive treaty of peace between Great Britain and the U.S. was signed at Paris, on September 3, 1783. In it, "His Britannic Majesty acknowledges the United be free, sovereign and independent states; that he treats them as such; and for himself, his heirs and successors, relinquishes all claims to the government, propriety and territorial rights of the same, and every part thereof..." The time delay was not only due to communication by sea, but time was needed for over 100,000 loyalists to leave the United States. Also known as Tories, the loyalists suffered various penalties for their loyalty to the Crown, including confiscation of property, removal from public office, and punitive taxation. Probably no more than 10% of the colonials were Tories, who were generally well-to-do, engaged in commerce, or the professions, or public officials. Many fled to Canada, where they were granted land if they fought in the British Army, some to England. Some returned after the war. Many, however, had remained behind, thinking Great Britain would win the war. After the conflict, those Tories that did remain were able to recover at least part some of their confiscated property, according to historians. In 1784 a major depression crippled the U.S. economy, prompting states to institute separate measures to aid recovery. The hardships suffered during this depression led to Shay's Rebellion on January 25,1787.
    1812 -- American forces invaded Canada at Queenston on October 13 and lost.
British forces under General Brock hurried down the road from Niagara-on-the-Lake to reinforce the troops at Queenston. When they arrived, the fight began to warm up and the main body of the American militia, on the U.S. side, refused to cross the river to back up the success of their comrades. Their cowardice in abandoning the brave men who had gone before, and the poor leadership of the American Forces changed victory to defeat and possibly changed the entire outcome of the war. General Brock led an attack against the forces on the hill and was killed by a sniper's bullet in the first charge. U.S. forces were back again on this date with an army of 5,000 troops assembled near Buffalo. A small force crossed the river and captured a British battery. General Smythe demanded the British surrender Fort Erie, when this was refused, he called off the invasion plan. His men broke their weapons in frustration and humiliation. Smythe was publicly called a coward and challenged to a duel by U.S. Col. Peter Proter. He resigned his command of the frontier, but was dismissed from the army in disgrace by the Senate. After two years of bloodshed, misguided and misdirected efforts, the armies were back where they started. There was no doubt that both sides of the river gave a heartfelt sigh of relief when the Treaty of Ghent ended the war in December, 1814.
    1835-Birthday of Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known as "Mark Twain, " Celebrated American author, whose books include: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Prince and the Pauper. Born at Florida, MO, Twain is quoted as saying, "I came in with Halley's Comet in 1835. It is coming again next year, and I expect to go out with it." He did Twain died at Redding, CT, Apr 21, 1910 (just one day after Halley's Comet perihelion).
    1854 -- "Fighting Mary" Eliza McDowell born. A social worker, she helped organize the first women's local union of the Amalgamated Meat Cutters in 1902. Comprised mostly of women workers, the Local grew to more than 1,000 members.
    1866-Construction begins on the first underwater highway tunnel, the Washington Street Tunnel, beneath the Chicago River, Chicago, IL. The total length of the tunnel and its approaches as 1,520 feet. It was lowered in 1907 to provide a clear draft of 27 feet in the Chicago River.
    1874 - Birthday of Lucy Maud Montgomery; Canadian writer, famous for her juvenile books, especially Anne of Green Gables (rejected by several publishers) published in 1908, and followed by six sequels.
    1875 - A severe early season cold wave set November records. Temperatures plunged to 5 degrees in New York City, NY, 2 below at Boston, MA and 13 below at Eastport, ME
    1887-The first softball game was played at the Farragut Boat Club, Chicago, IL. The game was invented by George W. Hancock, who devised a set of rules that gradually developed as the game progressed. A broomstick was used for the bat and a boxing glove for the ball. The game was known variously as Diamond Ball, Fast Ball, Kitten Ball, Playground Ball, and recreation Ball. It was named softball by Walter C. Hakanson.
    1907-Nov 30 or 31 st Disappearance of SF Police Chief William Biggy
    1906-Birthday of John Dickson Carr lives. Pseudonyms Carr Dickson, Carter Dickson, Roger Fairbairn. American born writer of detective fiction, whose specialty was "locked-room" puzzles, which he developed to its limits. Published about 80 mysteries. Fifty of them featured one of his three detectives - Henri Bencolin, Dr. Gideon Fell, & Sir Henry Merrivale.
    1912-Birthday of Gordon Parks, film director/writer (The Learning Tree) lives. Photographer for Life magazine, director of "The Learning Tree" & "Shaft", called a "Twentieth Century Renaissance man" by the NAACP, who awarded him its Spingarn Medal in 1972.
    1915 - "Brownie" McGee, blues singer and guitarist, born Knoxville, Tennessee. Best known as part of the duet Brownie McGee and Sonny Terry. Died February 16, 1996, Oakland, California.
    1929-Birthday of Dick Clark, long-time host of "American Bandstand, entertainer, producer, born Mount Vernon, NY.
    1931-- William Ernest "Bill" Walsh birthday, Pro Football Hall of Fame coach, 49ers, Born Los Angeles, CA.
1931 -Trumpet player Jack Sheldon Birthday
    1931-The Joy of Cooking is published, perhaps the most popular all-purpose cookbook, self-published by Irma Rombauer (1877-1962-her son by the way started Rombauer Winery in Napa making outstanding wine.) Rombauer's book was a comforting voice for cooks during the Depression, and the book grew into an institution. The first commercial edition of the book appeared in 1936, and it offered a revolutionary "action format" (chronologically ordered ingredients followed by instructions) now commonplace in cookbooks. In reality, she was not a cook, and most of the recipes she collected from friends and others, and wrote in a style for people who were not cooks. The numerous editions overseen by Rombauer and later her daughter and grandson sold more than 14 million copies.
    1933 -Birthday of African-American artist Sam Gilliam, born, Tupelo, Mississippi. Artist known for unique manipulation of materials resulting in painted sculpture or suspended paintings. His work was in the exhibit African-American Artists 1880-1987.
    1937 -Birthday of Noel Paul Stookey, American folk singer. Stookey was "Paul" of the 1960s folk trio Peter, Paul & Mary. Converted in the late 1960s, Stookey is now a Christian recording artist, and prefers using his "born again" name, "Noel."
    1938-- Bunny Berigan records Bix Biederbeck's "Davenport Blues."
    1939-- Dwight David Eisenhower was issued pilot's license No. 93,258 by the Civil Aeronautics Administration. He learned to fly when he was a lieutenant colonel on General Douglas Macarthur's staff in the Philippines. He is the only president of the United States to hold an airplane pilot's license.
    1940-- Charlie Parker cuts first date with Jay McShann Band, Radio KFBI, Wichita, KS, " I've Found a New Baby."
    1943 - On Capitol Records, Nat 'King' Cole and his trio recorded "Straighten Up and Fly Right", the first recording for the King Cole trio.
    1945---Top Hits
It's Been a Long, Long Time - The Harry James Orchestra (vocal: Kitty Kallen)
That's for Me - Dick Haymes
I'll Buy that Dream - The Pied Pipers
Shame on You - The Lawrence Welk Orchestra (vocal: Red Foley)
    1948 --Baseball's Negro National League announced they are disbanding; the 1949 is their last season. The National Negro American League closed its doors in 1962, although its fans were less and less after the 1950's as blacks began to play in the major leagues.
    1950-- Clover Dairy Company, Wilmington, DE, sold their first can of concentrated milk called Sealtest. Two parts of water were added to one part fluid milk. The Clover Dairy Company was a division of the National Dairy Products Corporation.
Originally it was only a "test," thus the name on the can.
    1952-- On a local New York television show, Jackie Robinson accuses the Yankee organization of being racist due to its failure to have a black player on the club.
    1953---Top Hits
Rags to Riches - Tony Bennett
Many Times - Eddie Fisher
Ricochet - Teresa Brewer
There Stands the Glass - Webb Pierce
    1954-The first meteorite known to have struck a person crashed through the roof of a house at Sylacauga, AL, bounced off a radio, and struck Mrs. Elizabeth Hodges on the hip. she was not permanently injured. The space rock was a sulfide meteorite weighing 8.5 pounds and measuring seven inches long. It was put on display in the University of Alabama Museum of Natural History, Moundville, AL.
    1954-Birthday of June Pointer, Pointer Sisters, born Oakland, California.
    1955 - Billy Idol (William Michael Albert Broad), Guitarist, singer, songwriter, born Middlesex, England.
    1956- Floyd Patterson won the heavyweight title by knocking out Archie Moore in the fifth round of a fight in Chicago. Patterson claimed the title made vacant by the retirement of Rocky Marciano on April 27.
    1961---Top Hits
Runaround Sue - Dion
Please Mr. Postman - The Marvelettes
Goodbye Cruel World - James Darren
Big Bad John - Jimmy Dean
    1964 - A cold wave brought temperatures to 17 below at Minneapolis and 3 below at Springfield, IL
    1967-- Julie Nixon & David Eisenhower announce their engagement
    1968 - Diana Ross and the Supremes hit t#1 on the music charts with "Love Child", a controversial song for the times. It stayed at #1 for two weeks.
    1969---Top Hits
Come Together/Something - The Beatles
And When I Die - Blood, Sweat & Tears
Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye - Steam
Okie from Muskogee - Merle Haggard
    1969 -- Simon & Garfunkel's first TV special airs. Sponsor AT&T backs out when they learn that the duo plan to show footage of Bobby Kennedy's funeral march and clips of the Vietnam War.
    1971 - As the "ABC Movie of the Week", ABC-TV presented "Brian's Song". The story was about Chicago Bears Brian Picolo and his friendship with Gayle Sayers, who watched him die a tragic death. The movie rated a 32.9 and a 48 share. "Brian's Song", performed by Michel Legrand, was the movie's theme.
    1974 - The Eagles released their hit, "Best of My Love", but it would take until March 1,1975 for it to hit #1 on the top 40 charts.
    1977---Top Hits
You Light Up My Life - Debby Boone
Don't It Make My Brown Eyes Blue - Crystal Gayle
How Deep is Your Love - Bee Gees
The Wurlitzer Prize (I Don't Want to Get over You) - Waylon Jennings
    1983-- Radio Shack announces the Tandy Model 2000 computer (80186 chip)
    1985--Separate Lives" by Phil Collins & Marilyn Martin topped the charts and stayed there for a week.
    1985---Top Hits
Separate Lives - Phil Collins & Marilyn Martin
Broken Wings - Mr. Mister
Never - Heart
Too Much on My Heart - The Statler Brothers
    1987 -- "Weird Al" Yankovic records first of his "Even Worse" LP: "Melanie" & "Stuck In A Closet With Vanna White".
    1988 -- LL Cool J performs the first rap concert held in Africa.
    1991 ---93 cars and 11 truck accident near Coalinga, California (Central California, after the grape vine,) during a dust storm, 17 die and 150 are injured. The area is well-known for its "tully" fog and dust storms.
    1991-"Set Adrift on Memory Bliss" by P.M. Dawn topped the charts and stayed there for a week.
    1991 -Minneapolis ended the month with 46.9 inches of snow, the most ever for November and for any month. Although the official start of winter was still 3 weeks away, the city had already surpassed the normal seasonal snowfall record with 55.1 inches since October 1 (normal for the entire winter is 49.2 inches)
    1993 --Brady gun bill signed into law.
    2000 --Free agent Mike Mussina inks an $88.5 million, six-year contract with the Yankees. The ten-year veteran compiled a 147-81 record with a 3.53 ERA as an Oriole hurler.



American Football Poem

S.F. 49ers

    Jane Griffin

Gold helmets shine in the sunlight.
The jerseys are loose and the pants are tight.
Those were the only things shining this year.
After so many losses, there's no reason to cheer.
That's what all thought but one loyal fan
Because not matter what, I believe that they can.
I know we could have won the Superbowl
If our kicker was able to make a field goal.
Many times when we could have won the game,
Because of special teams, we left the field in shame.
We'll have to wait until next season
To be the ones doing the teasin'.
The Superbowl will be our mission.
After all it's 49ers tradition.