ACS' Chief Operating Officer Finds Gold

Alternative Capital Solutions Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, Jeff Luker, took home the gold medal at the Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) Grappling Games in Nashville, Tennessee over the weekend. Jeff has served in the Commercial Lending industry for 6 years and has excelled in his practice of BJJ since 2017 - currently holding a 4-stripe blue belt.  

Jeff exemplifies hard work and strong leadership inside and outside the office – on and off the mat. We are proud of Jeff and all that he has achieved professionally as well as personally and his discipline is echoed throughout both. 

As Master Carlos Gracie, Jr., legendary practitioner and professor of BJJ, has stated:

“Discipline and consistency. I owe these two factors to all I have attained in life. Things have never happened overnight. Results have appeared as consequence of decades long toil. It is necessary to persist.” 

Discipline and consistency are key no matter where you are in life or whatever your goals may be. Let’s make these values part of our mantra for 2021. 

Terry Luker featured in Deal Maker Magazine

Luker Masters ‘Three-Headed Monster’ of Diversification at ACS.

Industry Icon Terry Luker shares the secret to his success with ACS — Alternative Capital Solutions: find your niche, form strong partnerships and fill voids in the market. By taking a three-pronged approach, Luker strengthens his community bank relationships and ensures every deal that comes across his desk finds its home.

Terry Luker had been in the automotive industry for 21 years and was looking for a change. “I was a fixer. I’d go into broken stores and fix them,” he says. “And then about three years in, the owner would want to change pay plans… that’s when I would normally leave. The last time we did that, I decided that I was going to go do something different.”

ACS — Alternative Capital Solutions Is Born

A friend told Luker about shadow banking and a company called Commercial Capital Training Group. Luker recalls the conversation he had with his friend: “He said, ‘Terry, you’re an unbelievable deal maker. This is what you ought to do for a living.’” Soon, Luker met the Commercial Capital Training Group team and enrolled in the program.

During his training at CCTG, Luker learned how important it is to find your niche if you want to be successful. When he launched Alternative Capital Solutions seven years ago, he was determined to find a specialty that would set the company apart for the long haul.

Read more here …

PPP Loan Forgiveness

Clients of Alternative Capital Solutions,

The PPP loan forgiveness program is just about ready to begin. Our bank partner, First Freedom Bank has directed us to begin accepting applications and working on the forgiveness documentation for our clients. The forgiveness requests can begin on the 10th of August and we would like to get all of your documentation completed and ready to submit by that day.

There are two separate programs that must be used, a long form which is SBA Form 3508 and the short form which is SBA Form 3508EZ. The 3508EZ is obviously the less intrusive form and we hope that most of our clients will qualify to use this form. Either way we will be assisting you in completing your forgiveness request.

Both SBA Forms are attached as well as a needs list from First Freedom Bank.

To qualify for the EZ Form you must be able to answer “yes” to one of the three questions that are on the information sheet contained in the SBA Form 3508EZ. Here is a simple breakdown of the questions to be considered:

  1. The borrower is a self-employed individual, independent contractor, or sole proprietor who had no employees at the time of the PPP loan application.
  2. The borrower did not reduce annual salary or hourly wages of any employee by more than 25% during the covered period or the alternative payroll covered period when compared to the period January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020. You also cannot have reduced the number of employees.
  3. This will be the same as number 2 but instead of not reducing the number employees it is that you could not operate as usual due to the Covid restrictions.

Please read through the attachments. The credit analyst that processed your PPP loan will be your point of contact here at ACS and will assist you in determining if you need the EZ Form or if you have to complete the long form. Please be aware that the final decision on which form you must use can be overridden by the SBA and will be out of our control. In some cases, we will not know this information until after we have submitted for forgiveness, if the SBA through First Freedom Bank, rejects the short EZ form and requires your firm to complete the long form.

We look forward to getting your  pplications completed, submitted and your loans forgiven.

Thank you for choosing ACS to partner with for your financial needs during this time. Please remember that we are a full-service solutions provider and through a sister company, do on occasion loan our own funds when warranted and necessary.

Application Form
(Full) Form 3508 Forgiveness Application
(EZ) Form 3508 Forgiveness Application

Application Instructions
(Full) Form 3508 Forgiveness Instructions
(EZ) Form 3508 Forgiveness Instructions

Application Checklist
(Full) Form 3508 Forgiveness Checklist
(EZ) Form 3508 Forgiveness Checklist 

Terry Luker

A letter from our Founder Terry Luker​

As our country emerges from this catastrophic event called “coronavirus” what does the environment to obtain capital look like.  We are hearing all kinds of “New Policy” conversations from banks and from private lenders.  I have been told by several banks that they have a moratorium on any new commercial loans for at least 90 days.  We have seen first-hand banks decide not to close a loan that was ready to close and previously cleared to close.

Certainly, we are now living in a new environment.  Our largest go to lender in the SBA 7a program who specialized in new business startup financing has decided to not fund any new startup businesses for the next 12 months and focus all their energy on refinancing existing commercial loans.  This will be a devasting event for prospective new businesses.  They will now be forced to delay starting the business or go the private funding route that will cost them higher fees and interest as well as potential costing them a part of their new company.

So why would a very successful 7a lender that focused on new business startups change course?  Simple.  They know that most banks in the United States are about to go to a strict tightening of their lending policies.  These banks are going to sit on their hands and wait and see how the country recovers from this before lending any funds to refinance commercial properties and certainly they are going to run away from new business startups – usually the highest risk of any commercial loan.

So, you can see why a lender that normally specializes in the SBA’s 7a new business lending would change course.  They believe the opportunities to refinance existing businesses is going to soar as those business owners struggle to get their current bank or any bank in their community to lend money prior to seeing how all of this shakes out.  Credit worthiness will not matter.  The fact that the business owner has been with their bank for years, will not matter.  Want proof?  Look at the PPP loan program.  How many small business owners struggled to get their bank to help them with their loan?

I can tell you here at ACS, we have processed and been able to secure funding for over 320 business owners.  Most of these clients came to us because either their bank did not want to process the PPP loans and they sent the customers to us or the business owner could not get their current bank to work with them and get them the PPP loan. 

Several banks in our area refused to fund the entire lending amount that the business owner was entitled to.  Instead, the banks chose to fund only 75-80% of the loan entitlement amount so that when the forgiveness period comes around, they would not have anything left on the loan balance.  Talk about kicking us when we are down….and here is the best part.  Those banks chose not to tell their clients they were holding back funding until after the bank secured an SBA number – so they client couldn’t go anywhere else to get the loan.  One SBA number per business owner.

Just to be clear, I am not blaming the banks that did that.  There were no clear instructions on how the remaining balances would be treated by the FED and what the costs were going to be.  With the loans only carrying an interest rate of 1%, and the banks having to borrow the funds from the Home Loan Banks at .35%, there is simply not enough margin for those banks to carry those loans.

Never forget that banks are in business to make a profit.  So, you can understand when they are nervous or really unsure of the direction of the economy, they natural instinct is to pull back.  Unfortunately, that is exactly when business owners need more access to capital and not less.

So, what is a business owner going to do.  Well one thing is the business owner better have a great supporting cast around them.  Who is looking at cash flows and future earnings?  Who is looking at staffing and making sure the company is right sized between income, personnel and current debt?  We have companies that we have been helping navigate the entrepreneurial waters for years. 

As a business owner, you need quality people around you that can listen to your thoughts and your ideas but who are not afraid to not recommend something or at least say “why don’t we give this a few months to marinate.”  We have a business coach of our own who has been working with us for four years now.  He still brings out notes that he took when he first started meeting with us.  He is an important asset to our team.

The bottom line……getting access to money is going to get a lot tougher and business owners are going to need sources who know he might still be lending out there.  The access to capital is about to be a business owners’ number one focus in these trying times we are facing.  Find some sources that can get you access to capital and then hold on to them.

Lastly, during the funding of those 320 PPP loans, we had a business owner that was about to miss his payroll.  His PPP funds were coming but were going to miss his payroll by 2 days.  We believe in this business owner and enjoyed working with him, so we made the decision as a company to loan him the funds he needed to cover his payroll at no cost to him.  He covered his payroll and sent us our money back the day his PPP funds hit his account.  Always remember that relationships matter.

Terry Luker