The Business of Pleasure Boating

September/October 2018


  • President’s Message
  • 2018 Annual Conference Recap – Traverse City, MI
  • NMLA Board Election
  • 2019 Workshop – Savannah, GA
  • 2018 Annual Report
  • 2019 Marine Lenders Conference – Ocean Reef Club, N. Key Largo, FL
  • William B. Otto, III Award Recipient
  • 3Q2018 “Snapshot”
  • Here We Grow Again - New Members
  • Members in the News
  • Newsworthy     



More than 55% of this year’s conference attendees responded to our post-conference survey and gave the event a rave review. How can you beat great speakers, the sharing of valuable industry information, a beautiful resort, time with friends and associates, and perfect weather? I would like to extend my personal thanks to Peggy, Jackie, Robin, the conference committee, our FMLA intern, April Walker, and our photographer, Dave Trostle, for their hard work (see “Conference Recap” below for highlights and pictures). And finally, many, MANY thanks to NMLA’s 2018 Diamond Sponsor, M&T Bank, as well as to all of this year’s Annual Sponsors, for making our conference and other NMLA programs and events possible throughout the entire year.

Looking ahead, next on the schedule is the NMLA 2018 Annual Meeting on December 3, 2018. Proxy ballots will be emailed to all Lender Members in early November along with the bios of those seeking your vote to serve on the NMLA Board for the term 2019 - 2021 (pics, bios and voting information also found in this newsletter). The results of the election and NMLA’s 2019 slate of officers will be announced immediately after the meeting.

The 2019 Marine Lenders Workshop is already on our calendars (Savannah, GA on March 3-5, 2019) and we hope now, it is on your calendars as well! Updates on how the new tax law might affect cash flow will be included as well as presentations on lien perfection, insurance, underwriting small and large credits, collateral valuation and collections/repossession and remarketing.

And yes, 2019 is NMLA’s 40th Anniversary. The Ocean Reef Club located on North Key Largo in the Florida Keys has been chosen for this milestone Annual Conference. November 10-12, 2019 are the dates and we hope you, your colleagues, friends and families plan to join in the celebration (additional information can be found in this newsletter).

Thank you for your continued support of the NMLA. We couldn’t do it without you! Have a wonderful fall boat show and selling season and we hope to see you soon at an upcoming event.

Dennis Poer, President



NMLA Conference Attendees Say Many Takeaways from Speakers
Networking venues well-received

The beautiful Traverse City weather wasn’t the only thing that scored high marks at this year’s NMLA annual lenders’ conference – attendee feedback indicates the business sessions and speakers were spot-on! If you missed this year’s event, save the dates of November 10-12, 2019 now for next year’s 40th annual event. More on that later in this newsletter!
CLICK HERE for a recap of this year’s business sessions and speaker highlights
CLICK HERE for 2018 conference pictures
CLICK HERE for 2018 conference golf tournament results and pictures


Don’t forget to vote

The NMLA Annual Meeting and board of director’s election is coming up on December 3, 2018. This year, four (4) extremely qualified individuals are seeking three (3) open board positions.

The election process is as follows:

  • In early November, each NMLA Regular Member will receive a proxy ballot asking that they vote for the three (3) candidates they’d like to have serve as Directors for the term 2019 through 2022. 
  • Ballots must be returned to NMLA Counsel James Stewart c/o the Law Office of Kotz Sangster Wysocki, P.C. no later than December 2, 2018.
  • The results of the election will be announced by Mr. Stewart, at the 2018 Annual Meeting and shared with the membership directly thereafter.

Your vote is important so please don’t forget to return your ballot immediately upon receipt.
CLICK HERE  to read the impressive bios of the candidates.






March 3-5, 2019

Mark your calendars NOW for the next NMLA Marine Lenders Workshop at the Hilton Embassy Suites in beautiful Downtown Savannah, GA. New this year will be a discussion on how the changes in the tax law might affect cash flow analysis. Other presentations include lien perfection, insurance, underwriting small and large credits, collateral valuation and collections/repossession and remarketing.
CLICK HERE for this year’s registration form.
PICTURED: 2018 Workshop attendees



NMLA’s 38th consecutive annual report of marine lending performance trends for consumer and commercial financing has been released. The 115-page 2018 NMLA Annual Report is an important tool for building, understanding and maintaining quality recreational marine loan production and profitability is “free” to those who participated in this year’s questionnaire and is also available for sale HERE. Statistical data includes: 

  • average loan size    
  • terms
  • borrower demographics
  • operational practices
  • portfolio turn-over
  • comparison of consumer versus boat loan portfolio delinquencies and charge-offs

For questions about the content of the report or to participate in the 2019 survey process, please contact Jim Coburn, NMLA Chairman of the Annual Report Committee (586-530-3935) or Robin Cottmeyer, NMLA Association Manager (410-980-1401).


Ocean Reef Club, Key Largo FL

Mark your calendar for November 10-12, 2019

You won’t want to miss this event – the 40th anniversary annual lenders conference at the renowned Ocean Reef Club on its own private island in the northernmost tip of the Florida Keys. 

The NMLA has secured an unbelievable room rate of $269/night for the event, and this rate will be honored three days prior and after the conference dates for those who want to linger a bit longer in this paradise. The property includes the Fishing Village reminiscent of a quaint Main Street lined with restaurants and boutiques, three golf courses, a spa, pools, a sandy beach, and saltwater lagoon where you can rent kayaks, paddleboards, windsurfers and more. More details, including when you can make your reservations – and you will want to book early – will follow in the coming months.



Bank OZK - Blue Water Finance - Epic Finance - Marine One Acceptance 

Medallion Bank - National Liquidators - Shore Premier Finance

Sterling Acceptance Corporation - U.S. Bank



Mike Smith honored with the "William B. Otto Marine Lending Industry Service Award”

The “William B. Otto Marine Lending Industry Service Award” recognizes individuals within the marine lending and wider boating industry who have given their time and energy to improve the NMLA and other marine related groups.

Mike Smith is a co-founder and former President of Global Marine Insurance Agency (retired 2012). He is a former NMLA Director and currently serves on both the Education Committee, participating at the Marine Lenders Workshop each year, as well as the Conference Committee. But these titles and positions pale when compared to the work he has done on behalf of the marine industry over the past 40 years. Thank you, Mike Smith, for educating a generation of marine lenders and helping so many become involved in the industry and boating. Read the Press Release HERE.
PICTURED: L-R  Bill Otto (NMLA Director Emeritus), Pam Stanley (Global Marine Insurance Agency – Ret.), Mike Smith (Global Marine Insurance Agency – Ret.) and Greg Proteau (former NMLA Executive Director)



During the first week of October,  all NMLA Lender Members will be asked to complete our 3Q2018 “SNAPSHOT” survey. We’re hoping everyone will take a moment to share their perception of what transpired during the last quarter and project what the final quarter of 2018 might look like (where HAS the year gone???).

CLICK HERE for the analysis of what you projected would happen 3Q2018 when the last survey was completed back early April 2018. Have perceptions changed? 



Here We Grow Again
NMLA Welcomes Three Lender Members

The NMLA is proud to welcome marine lenders Flagstar Bank, J.J. Best Banc & Co. and Recreational Dealer Services LLC as our newest members. “It is very rewarding to have marine lenders seek out our organization as a valuable tool to their expansion” commented NMLA President Dennis Poer on the approval of these organizations into the NMLA.

WELCOME ABOARD Garry, John and Greg.  Overviews of each business as well as contact information can be found HERE.



NMLA Members Attend 2018 American Boating Congress
Focus on Strengthening Collective Advocacy for Recreational Boating and Fishing

Four National Marine Lenders Association directors/members participated on behalf of U.S. recreational marine lending in the American Boating Congress held in Washington, DC this past May.
Visit for details on the next American Boating Congress -  May 13-15, 2019. Help strengthen your recreational boating industry by joining NMLA representatives and industry leaders at this important event. 

PICTURED: L-R John Haymond (Medallion Bank), Don Parkhurst (SunTrust Bank), Karen Trostle (Sterling Acceptance Corporation), and Jim Coburn (Coburn & Associates, LLC)

Fifth Third to acquire MB Financial
Merger brings mid-size regional bank to core Fifth Third growth market
First announced in May, the sale has now been approved by MB Financial shareholders. Correspondence from MB Financials’ indirect lending group indicates Mitch Feiger, currently CEO of MB Financial, will become Chairman and CEO of Fifth Third Chicago and will guide the combined organization with the same client focus he has instilled at MB over the past 20+ years. Full story here. 

Home BancShares, Inc to acquire Shore Premier Finance
CEO cites expectation of strong risk adjusted return for investors
Home BancShares, Inc, headquartered in Conway, AR and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Centennial Bank, announced its acquisition of Shore Premier Finance. The company will continue to offer inventory and retail financing to the yacht market. Read the release here.

Flagstar Bank hires Ryan Goldberg to head retail bank division
Also announces acquisition of 52 Wells Fargo branches in Midwest
In his new role Goldberg will oversee branch banking, consumer finance, national business banking, and investment and insurance services. Here's the complete release.

SeaCoast Banking Corp of Florida to acquire First Green Bancorp Inc
Merger will increase Seacoast deposits in Orlando, Daytona, Fort Lauderdale
Acclaimed as a top innovative community bank, Seacoast National Bank expand primarily in the Orlando area with the purchase of First Green Bank. Click for details.

US Bank expansion brings job growth to Cincinnati
Bank continues to invest in the city it has supported for 150+ years
Over the next five years US Bank has committed to add 400 new jobs in the Cincinnati area where it already employs over 3500 workers. Click for details.

US Bank offers digital process for small business loans and lines of credit
Same day completion for loans up to $250,000
US Bank has launched a fully digital platform for single-owner businesses to apply, review loan approval details, and electronically sign loan documents all in one day. Read more here.



Free Credit Freezes Now Available
Reporting agencies to offer online services
The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act took effect September 21st, requiring Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian to offer credit freezes and fraud alerts to consumers at no charge. Here are the details.

Identity Thieves Love Fake Pay Stubs
The Federal Trade Commission is cracking down on the not-so-small industry of creating and selling fake pay stubs online, which according to the FTC are often used to fraudulently obtain auto loans, and other dodgy transactions. CLICK Here is the entire article as seen in “Forbes” September 21, 2018



The Business of Pleasure Boating is a newsletter for the benefit of NMLA members. Three times per year, the Marketing Committee strives to include timely industry articles as well as information about YOU. So, if you have a special announcement or think an article you’ve read (or written) might be of interest to other NMLA members, please send them to Robin Cottmeyer at And remember, a good picture is always worth a thousand words.


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