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bank of the west

Bank of the West is a 135-year-old financial services company headquartered in San Francisco, California; as a member of the BNP Paribas Group, it’s among the six strongest global banks in the world, according to Standard & Poor’s. That’s the big picture, with Bank of the West and its subsidiaries serving the needs of 1.7 million customers with a broad range of retail, small business and commercial banking products for a variety of industries, including the automobile, agriculture and RV sectors. In the marine marketplace, this corporation has been fiercely focused on expanding its portfolio over the last few years. It currently serves 800 marine dealers across the United States with both retail and floor-plan lending. And, to further demonstrate its commitment to the marine industry, Bank of the West signed on as a Platinum Partner with the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas in April 2012.

"While Bank of the West has long been a supporter of the marine industry, we joined the MRAA just last year,” says Daniel Swanson, vice president/assistant national sales and marketing manager. "We were looking for additional ways that we could support the marine industry and participate in industry events and found that the MRAA fit that goal.”

Bank of the West has played a significant role in helping the marine market recover in the challenging years following the recession. "The marine industry is moving past a very rough patch in the business cycle,” says Mark Beecher, executive vice president at Bank of the West. "We continue to support our marine dealer base with retail finance programs from our National Indirect Lending Group as well as our Essex Credit subsidiary. In the depth of the recession, we started a Commercial Finance business, serving the commercial financing needs of the marine industry, as well as dealers in the auto and RV markets. Our long history of prudent underwriting enables us to support well-managed dealers with all their financing needs.”

Bank of the West provides marine dealers with a full suite of banking products. In addition to indirect lending and inventory finance, the company offers cash management and real estate loans, and direct lending services that include loans for liveaboard vessels through Essex Credit. As a Platinum Partner, Bank of the West offers MRAA members competitive rates and terms, as well as the industry-leading VIB pre-approval program. "It provides the dealer with a quick and easy-to-use self-qualifying indirect credit option,” says Swanson. "Bank of the West also pays a Bear Bonus on every indirect credit transaction of $10,000 or more, which is an additional incentive on top of any other earned participation.”