National Tooling and Machining Association members have broader access to capital under an alliance with First International Bank.
The arrangement extends a relationship that began in 1998. The bank allied initially with NTMA's Connecticut chapter and later with six other regional chapters. Additions occurred as the bank expanded across the country.
Having the alliance at a national level is "probably a more effective way to reach membership," Dennis Cesen, senior vice president, said in a telephone interview from the bank's office in Hartford, Conn.
With minimal or no down payment, NTMA members can take as long as 15 years to repay a loan for new equipment or to refinance used equipment. Traditional loans are five to seven years, with few going beyond 10 years, he said. A variable-rate program allows prepayment without penalty.
A longer repayment period "allows a small to medium-sized business to have a cash cushion" to deal with economic cycles or business changes, Cesen said.
Fort Washington, Md.-based NTMA and the chapters receive royalties on a tiered basis reflecting the bank's volume of production-equipment loans to members. The new arrangement was announced in February.
First International has seven other industry-related alliances and a variety of e-commerce sites, including Singapore-based Plasticscommerce.net.
The wholesale-only bank is a subsidiary of Nasdaq-traded First International Bancorp Inc.