Extending Credit in Today's Business Environment: NACM-Canada's 7th Annual Credit Conference and Expo in Ottawa

Business Credit, January 2006 | Go to article overview

Extending Credit in Today's Business Environment: NACM-Canada's 7th Annual Credit Conference and Expo in Ottawa


Approximately 90 credit professionals from Canada, the U.S. and Saudi Arabia gathered at the October NACM-Canada 7th Annual Credit Conference and Expo in Canada's national capital of Ottawa. The focus of the 2005 Conference was Extending Credit in Today's Business Environment. NACM-Canada president Ken Garrison, CAE, welcomed credit professionals from a wide range of industries including petrochemicals, technology and forest products.

Peter Hall, Deputy Chief Economist of Export Development Canada, gave the keynote address concerning the current state of the Canadian economy. He also expressed his opinion as to how the U.S. economy is faring, and how it will affect future business in Canada.

A key concern among credit and risk management professionals is how to catch the early warning signs signifying that a customer may be heading into financial trouble. Hubert Sibre, a partner in the law firm of BCF LLC, and Christie Zuk, Director of Scoring and Analytics with D&B Canada, addressed these concerns in their session on Financial and Non-Financial Red Flags. They used examples from recent headlines to examine what signs may have been missed leading up to those companies' downturns. Ms. Zuk explained what financial ratios should be monitored to ascertain possible issues with customers, and Mr. Sibre pointed out indicators that may be overlooked--such as a customer that suddenly becomes harder to get in touch with, or changes visible when doing a site visit.

During the conference, a Luncheon Expo was held to provide attendees with the opportunity to network with other credit and risk management professionals, and to browse the valuable products and services offered by exhibitors.

The next presenter, Eddy Sumar, International Trade Financing Manager with Rain Bird International Inc., spoke about the relationship between credit and sales departments, and how through communication and mutual respect, harmony can exist.

Outsourcing of the credit and A/R functions is a growing concern to many in the credit and risk management professions. Agostino Cannavino, Assistant Manager of Credit and Corporate Disbursements with Imperial Tobacco Co., Ltd. spoke on this subject, with Joseph Petraglia and Jack Fucale of GoBilling Automated Billing Services, Inc. …

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