Capital to start a business, capital to grow a business — capital is the essential element in any business endeavor. The types of sources that businesspeople can turn to are varied, and access to funding has become increasingly complicated. But it’s not just the final borrower who is facing these challenges; issues are impacting lending institutions as well, while they continue to try to support the businesses in their communities.
To name but a few of those issues, today’s bankers are being pressured by a prolonged low-interest-rate environment, rising regulatory compliance costs, rising technology costs and relatively weak loan demand. Add to that the uncertain path ahead as the federal banking regulators continue to dribble out the rules necessary to implement the Dodd-Frank Act more than three years since its passage. To date, roughly 60 percent of the rules mandated by the Act have yet to be promulgated in final form. This paralysis is hamstringing our economic recovery as businesses, households and consumers struggle to access the capital they need to fulfill their goals.
This issue’s cover story, “How a Changing Economy Is Shaping Money,” is well named. Economic events have changed attitudes and regulations even while spawning new avenues for entrepreneurs. In researching the article, writer Don Rodriguez spoke with professionals from banking to more esoteric financing sources who shared their expertise and insights on the events and actions that are impacting the availability of funding.
Securing funding may be an occasion to raise a glass of wine in a toast to success — and there are Arizona wines to do it with. Winery owners took time during their busiest season to speak with Alison Stanton, who presents a look at our state’s wine industry for the “Sector” feature. Tom Beyer opens his three-part “Education” series on Internet marketing with “Base Website Design on Your Sales Process.” Other features explore the changing dynamics of negotiation, and a time and management dilemma that faces founders who want to expand their business.
Also in this issue, the annual Business Lending Guide is a resource to help business owners find lending opportunities through its listings of local lenders.
In Business Magazine continues to fill each monthly edition with articles on diverse subjects aimed at helping build business, and I am pleased to welcome you to this October issue.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Arizona Bankers Association
Paul Hickman is the president and CEO of Arizona Bankers Association, the trade association for the banking industry in Arizona. AzBA represents banks of all sizes and business niches in the state, from the largest, global actors to the smallest, one-branch, rural community bank. Hickman oversees the state and federal government relations operations of the Association, and acts as the chief spokesman and advocate for the industry in Arizona. Prior to joining the Arizona Bankers Association, Hickman was State Director to U.S. Senator John McCain.