Transcribed Podcast: Vendor 360 w/ Brett Allen of Envision Capital Group.
I recently sat down with Envision Capital Group co-founder, Brett Allen to talk about the companies proprietary vendor finance program Vendor 360. If you wish to read the podcast transcription — see below.
Wade Bergquist: Hello, and welcome to another edition of Ask Envision, Envision Capital Group’s podcast series.
Wade Bergquist: On today’s episode, I sit down with Brett Allen, co-founder of Envision Capital Group, to talk about our proprietary vendor financing program, Vendor 360.
Wade Bergquist: Small business owners, equipment vendors, franchise owners, and middle market executives nationwide look to Envision Capital Group for their financing needs. Our commitment to fast, dependable funding and great service has helped us achieve full A+ accreditation with the Better Business Bureau.
Wade Bergquist: We also have dozens of customer testimonials throughout social media that will give you insight into what it’s like to work with us. If you have questions about Vendor 360, Brett Allen can be reached at 949–553–9420. Thank you for listening, and enjoy the podcast.
END PODCAST INTRO
Wade Bergquist: Hello, everyone. My name is Wade Bergquist. I’m the chief marketing officer with Envision Capital Group, and we are here with one of the co-founders, Brett Allen. We’re going to be talking about Vendor 360, what it means to the equipment finance world, and in essence, the ins and outs.
Wade Bergquist: So, Brett, very appreciative that you’re here to talk about Vendor 360 and this program that we’ve had for over a year, now.
Brett Allen: Absolutely!
Wade Bergquist: So, to jump right in, we always say there are three main goals to Vendor 360. We’re talking about helping vendors sell more equipment. We want to help them build and maintain a loyal customer base, and we also, of course, want to help vendors drive profits.
Wade Bergquist: You’ve been in equipment financing in these for a long time, but what is it about a vendor program that makes so much sense for not only the vendors, but also for their customers?
Brett Allen: Like you said, I’ve been in the industry doing this for about 16 years, and early on, working with vendors really came to me as one of the greatest opportunities to help and be a value to them.
Brett Allen: Working with vendors and putting together programs helps in a lot of different ways, and I would say that being able to fill a need for the customer. 80% of businesses finance or lease their equipment, so being able to offer financing as a vendor to your customer just helps them get their hands on your equipment, helps them acquire it easier.
Brett Allen: You vet it out. A good company is reputable, is going to take good care of them, and it just makes the process a lot more seamless. We’re able to help deliver good quality financing with programs that could be a little more flexible for what the customer’s needs are, and get the vendor paid in a timelier fashion.
Brett Allen: It just makes a lot of sense from all angles, that vendor being able to be that one-stop shop to helping people get what they need to run their business in the least amount of time and most efficient as possible.
Wade Bergquist: I like what you said, too, being of course vendor-customer focused. What is it, in your experience, when you’re talking with a vendor for the first time … How do you talk about that conversation with regard to looking out for the best interest of their customer?
Brett Allen: Sure, well, it’s important for us to really just understand what the sales process looks like for the vendor, who their customers are, and just what their needs are.
Brett Allen: At the end of the day, a vendor is focused on taking care of their customers, selling their equipment, doing what they are doing for their business. The customer, themselves, they need to acquire certain things, but they also are focused on running their business, and they need to stay focused on that.
Brett Allen: Really being able to understand how we can come in, bridge the gap, make the process as easy and seamless as process so the vendor can focus on what they need to, and the customer can focus on what they need to, to run their business and earn revenue is really our main goal.
Brett Allen: Because we’ve been doing this for so long, we have the best programs. We are able to offer the most flexible terms and really understand what their needs are, and take that consultative approach. A lot of customers will say they’re looking to maximize. They need to purchase equipment. It’s going to be an expense for them, so we’re going to maximize some of their tax benefits and things like that. There are different financial products and things we can do to help assist with the best funding.
Wade Bergquist: And how often would you say, when you’re talking with either a new vendor or a current vendor relationship we have, where custom financing comes in? I’m going to make the assumption it’s 100% of the time, yet can you talk about from the customer perspective?
Wade Bergquist: Because sometimes they’ll go to their vendor, they’re looking for a piece of equipment, and they don’t even know that a particular program is offered. So, yes, we offer custom financing, yet it’s a real eye-opener for the vendors, because they don’t always know new finance programs are available. So, we do them sell more equipment, and of course the customer’s ecstatic because they’re getting a better structure.
Brett Allen: Yeah, absolutely. That really comes up a lot, because we’re experts in this field.
Wade Bergquist: Correct!!
Brett Allen: It’s what we do. But most customers and vendors are not, so it’s one of those necessary things that they need to do to acquire the equipment as a customer and sell it as a vendor.
Brett Allen: And that’s the thing. We really try to take that consultative approach and understand what the needs are, because any finance company can offer your cookie-cutter programs. But the ability for us to service a wide range of customers, whether they’re A through D credit histories, or they’re newer in business, or have been in business for a long time, or maybe they were doing well for a while, but they had a couple slow years.
Brett Allen: So, really understanding maybe there are certain times during the year they have a lot of revenue coming in, or other times during the year they don’t. We’re able to structure it to match what their needs are so they can be able to acquire what they need to, and do it as efficiently and cost-effective as possible.
Wade Bergquist: That being said, in 2018 you had briefly discussed tax benefits. Can you touch just a little bit deeper with regard to what tax benefits that vendors and their customers can take advantage of?
Wade Bergquist: I know the situations are always different, based on the equipment and things of that nature, but just in your experience, how does tax sometimes come in to this?
Brett Allen: Sure. At the end of the day, everyone being an entrepreneur, being in business, we must pay our taxes. But the key is, in business, cash is king. The more money we can hold onto in to our business to use to grow it, hire more people, to do more marketing, to do whatever we need to do, the more profitable, the better our business is going to be.
Brett Allen: The number one reason why our clients come to us is because there are significant tax benefits with leasing over financing. There’s ways that we can structure a lease where you can literally expense your entire payment for over the term of the lease.
Brett Allen: If you’re like most businesses, a blended state/federal income tax rate could be about 40%. Being able to write this the right way, you could literally be sitting 40% off of your payment every month because you structured it as a tax lease to be able to do that. That’s substantial. If your payment is $1,000 a month, it ends up only costing you $600 a month. That’s a big area where I think a lot of people aren’t aware of, but is one of the greatest advantages of leasing.
Wade Bergquist: Yeah. And that being said, Vendor 360 and Envision Capital Group’s proprietary vendor financing program, how easy is that to implement for vendors who sometimes … They want to have this level of financing. They want to offer different options to their customers.
Wade Bergquist: In your experience, how easy is this to implement into a vendor who’s never had a vendor program or maybe a vendor sometimes who potentially has a salty taste in their mouth because an old vendor program didn’t work as well as they anticipated?
Brett Allen: Yeah, it’s never been easier and it’s about as easy as you can get because we are not coming to the table and saying, “Here’s a program. Here’s the way it needs to run and needs to run, and you need to find a way to fold this in to what you’re doing.”
Wade Bergquist: Sure.
Brett Allen: We’re really taking that consultative approach and understanding how the vendor does business, and we want to fold in to the way that they’re doing business so that it’s as seamless as possible, it’s in front of their customers, and it just makes it really easy.
Brett Allen: So by really taking the time to understand all of the ins and outs, if you will, of the sales process and how the vendor works, after a couple conversations, we can come to the table and really provide some value there. It’s very seamless and there’s not a lot of work at all that needs to be done on the vendor’s end.
Wade Bergquist: Great answer, number one. But number two, it brings me to our final question of the podcast, and that is — and you’ve answered it a little bit, but I want you to have the opportunity to go a little bit deeper — what is it vendors can expect when working with Envision Capital Group and Vendor 360?
Brett Allen: As cliché as it sounds, what they can expect is integrity, character and we deliver on our promises. We say we’re going to do something, we take care of it. The customers and the vendors are both going to have a really good experience because we are offering great options and we are focused on taking on as much of the responsibility as possible on both ends to really help them focus on what they need to do.
Brett Allen: We’re going to delivery top-quality service, great programs, and a single point of contact. If vendor need pre-funding up front — we can deliver. There’s lots of different things, but at the end of the day, they can definitely rest assured that they’re going to get excellent service and their needs are going to be met, and any pain points they have, we’re going come up with a solution to help things work even more seamlessly.
Wade Bergquist: Fantastic, great. And it’s a powerful program. I know that for a fact because I’ve had a chance to speak with a number of vendors who currently work with us. I love the fact that we can be so custom and so seamless and really answer those questions and make everyone from the vendor to their customer very comfortable in how we finance equipment. Everyone, at the end of the day, wins!
Brett Allen: Absolutely!
Wade Bergquist: Excellent. I want to say thank you for taking the time. Your expertise is always welcome, and we’re going to do this again, here, in the next couple of weeks.
Wade Bergquist: If someone wants to get ahold of you, Brett, what is the best way to do that?
Brett Allen: Sure. Please, call me directly. My direct number is 949–553–9420, or you can e-mail me. My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Please, call me for any reasons. I’ve been doing this for a long time. If there’s different areas that you’re having some challenges in or you think you can work better or just questions, I love the business and I love talking about these things. I’m happy to help in any way.
Wade Bergquist: Excellent, you’re welcome. I always appreciate the time.
Wade Bergquist: Everyone, thank you for taking the time to listen to this podcast on Envision Capital Group’s proprietary vendor financing program, Vendor 360. I invite you to look at our website, envisioncapitalgroup.com, where there is a specific page for Vendor 360.
Wade Bergquist: From all of us, here, at Envision Capital Group, and of course, Mr. Brett Allen, thanks for listening and have a great afternoon. Take care!