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Oak Street Grows Through Expansion into New Markets

Oak Street Funding Expands into Lending for Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs)

INDIANAPOLIS, IN--(Marketwired - May 18, 2017) - Oak Street Funding® (www.oakstreetfunding.com), a First Financial Bank company, continues growing through expansion into additional financial services verticals.

Oak Street Funding has a message to the RIA industry, specifically educating the industry on how Oak Street can support their business goals throughout the lifecycle of their business. Whether that is expansion through acquisition, partner buy-ins or succession planning, Oak Street will be there to help this industry have the financing it needs to exceed its goals. Oak Street has expertise -- spanning back to 2003 -- of serving the insurance industry, and started leveraging that expertise with the RIA industry in 2016.

"For years, we've seen great success in the insurance industry. We know that the insurance agencies consider their customer relationships as their most valuable asset. Registered Investment Advisors have a similar business model, and we pride ourselves in providing an opportunity for growth in these cash flow businesses," says Rick Dennen, CEO of Oak Street Funding. "Sometimes RIAs are so focused on their clients' investments, that they aren't considering their own investment opportunities," added Dennen. "Investing in their own business now can have incredible payoffs in the long run."

Many companies and RIAs aspire to increase their Assets under Management (AUM), but find it difficult to gain access to capital for the investment, given their lack of intangible assets to leverage as collateral. Limits to loan terms and requirements to leverage property and to obtain spouse accountability have deterred some RIAs from pursuing SBA lending. With such high personal risks and a low funding opportunities, many RIAs have questioned whether the investment is worth the payoff.

With a solid history of non-SBA lending, Oak Street Funding started offering loans to RIAs in 2016. Funds can be used to hire an additional partner or fund a partner buyout, initiate a succession plan, consolidate debt, develop specialized services, enter new markets, invest in a marketing strategy, or upgrade technology, among others. In the 2016 Advisor Benchmarking RIA Trend Report: Practice Management & Operations, 68% of advisors identify 'grow profit via higher AUM and revenues' as a top initiative for their business, and are most likely to consider organic growth strategies, like increasing business development, improving client satisfaction, and improving strategic business planning.

Funds from Oak Street can also be used to enable an acquisition strategy. Benefits to growing one's business through acquisition rather than organically can yield exponential results. By buying and building relationships through portfolio acquisition, RIAs can actively increase their AUM, rather than passively waiting for current clients' contributions and assets to grow.

Oak Street Funding is an expert in specialty financing. Oak Street partners with insurance businesses, registered financial advisors (RIAs), certified public accountants (CPAs) and restaurant franchisees under the First Franchise Capital brand, as well as third-party servicing for commercial, specialty financing portfolios. Since 2003, Oak Street Funding has been successful nationwide in fulfilling the unique capital needs for these cash flow-based industries while providing extraordinary service to their borrowers.

About Oak Street Funding

Indianapolis-based Oak Street Funding (www.oakstreetfunding.com), a First Financial Bank company, provides commercial financing for financial service businesses, restaurant franchises through the First Franchise Capital (www.firstfranchisecapital.com) brand and third-party loan servicing for financial institutions. Oak Street Funding and First Franchise Capital utilize industry knowledge, proprietary technology and passion to deliver top-quality service and capital products to finance services professionals and franchise owners nationwide.

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