Blog Feature

Portfolio Services News

Joe Andries

By: Joe Andries on January 6th, 2015

Servicer News, Vol. 9 Fall 2014


GreatAmerica Portfolio Services Group (GPSG) is a lease and loan outsourcing service provider specializing in third party and backup servicing. We focus on developing mutually beneficial relationships with banks, independent financial companies, captives, vendors, manufacturers, trustees and financial investors, ultimately helping them achieve greater success.


Third Party Servicing – Solar Industry Update

As the solar industry continues to grow, our focus is on helping our customers gain market share by bringing enhancements to the servicing side of residential solar contracts/agreements. We are eliminating some of the manual aspects of the servicing process (e.g. public filings and cash posting) and placing more emphasis on efficiency. While economies of scale are requiring this, the home owner's experience remains a priority. Our staff is constantly looking for ways to improve day to day work flow and bring new offerings to the table. In fact, we are assisting customers in launching a "loan" product as an alternative to a lease or power purchase agreement (PPA). This broader array of financial offerings is a telltale sign of greater maturity in the solar industry as its constituents become more comfortable with lender and investment opportunities. Our commitment to the solar industry has never been stronger, and we feel fortunate to be an integral part of the growth of this exciting industry!

Third Party Servicing – Banking Industry Update

Banks are growing the equipment leasing asset side of their portfolio with renewed vigor. They are faced with excess loan capacity (not 100% loaned out) and equipment leasing portfolios are very attractive at this time. While still important, there is less conversation around performance and more around yield enhancement and growth. For banks entering the space within the past two years, it has been a very good decision. Our bank customers have experienced significant growth and impressive performance. The common denominator for success appears to be a combination of top leadership support and a willingness to invest in a "leasing person" or team to shepherd the opportunity. We provide support of these initiatives through our experienced people, proven leasing platform, and established lease processes. We expect to see continued leasing growth and exceptional performance from our bank customers – the outlook is very good.

Third Party Servicing – Equipment Leasing Industry Update

"Competitive" is how I would describe the current equipment lease and finance landscape, with every lessor working hard to maintain and grow market share. Our mission is to add value to all our customers. It is now more viable for leasing divisions of banks, captives, and independent lessors starting or growing an on-book lease portfolio. They can be free to focus on their core competency of sales or originations and use us for operational tasks. This model also gives our customers complete control of their customer base and bolsters their confidence to hold their own portfolio with the use of private funds (friends and family), institutions, or their own cash flow. We didn't see this level of confidence a year ago. A continuant servicing standard controlled by our lessor builds brand equity and repeat business...and it eliminates operational and compliance barriers!

Backup Servicing – Definition of Hot, Warm, & Cold?

Recently, we were asked how we define backup servicing assignments. This has been a common question for many years, and it prompted us to think of why there isn't a universal definition for "Hot", "Warm" or "Cold" backup servicing. Although varied definitions will continue to be present, the focus remains constant on diminishing the servicing risks through a viable backup serving partner . We've applied the following definitions based on acceptance by major investors, rating agencies and issuers:


Daily, weekly, and monthly data file storage, data mapping and testing, portfolio monitoring and review, periodic on-site operational reviews, transition planning, resource allocation. Targeted servicing transition within 30 days.


Monthly data file storage, data mapping, portfolio monitoring and review, initial onsite operational review, transition planning. Servicing transition 30-60 days.


Semi-annual or annual data file storage, limited upfront data mapping, periodic portfolio monitoring and review, reservation of space on servicing systems. Servicing transition greater than 60 days.


After seven years of teaching elementary school in eastern Iowa, Sasha felt it was time for a change where she could "work with adults" and grow in a position that challenged her. She joined the Portfolio Services Group 14 months ago as an Account Support Advisor. "I love doing different types of things, from audits to imaging to filing UCCs, I always feel like I'm learning and it keeps me on my toes," Sasha says. "I especially enjoy watching PSG grow and being part of that growth, learning about new lessors and building processes that will serve them best."

Keeping the Promise...

In speaking with a colleague recently, the question came up regarding "how do you find your customers?" The short answer is through direct conversation, awareness, marketing, affiliation and referral. The long answer is by making sure we are delivering value to our current customer base and keeping our promise to prospective clients. When we promise "high service levels from our employees, flexible and reliable systems, and proven procedural servicing practices," behind the scenes we are making sure we deliver on that promise day in and day out. Are we perfect? Probably not, but we take every measure to strive for that ideal. What happens behind the curtain is a large amount of time and resources to make sure our employees are trained and ready to serve, our systems are continually monitored and enhanced, and our procedures are audited and tested often. The end result; I can confidently speak to customers and potential customers about being their servicing partner and to the value we will deliver to their business model. A promise that has served GreatAmerica well for 22 years!

Joe Andries
Vice-President & General Manager
GreatAmerica Portfolio Services
Tel. 877-762-3808 or 507-929-5117
Fax 877-762-3809

Benefits of a Servicing Partnership with GreatAmerica Portfolio Services Group
  • Alignment with an Industry Recognized Leader
  • Commitment to the Industry's we serve
  • Financial Strength
  • Proven Servicing Platform
  • Flexible Servicing Approach
  • Customer Focused Culture
  • Exceptionally Trained Employees
  • Leading Edge Technology

Solar Facts:

  • The U.S. Solar market enjoyed a solid Q2, with photovoltaic (PV) installations topping the gigawatt mark for the third consecutive quarter to settle at 1,133 megawatts (MW).
  • This performance represents 21% growth over Q2 of last year and brings cumulative installed solar capacity to 15,900 MW.
  • Through the first half of the year, 53% of all new electric capacity installed has come from solar. With over 42,000 installations in 2014 Q2, more than half a million homes and businesses have now gone solar.
  • Through the first half of 2014, a new solar project has been installed every 3.2 minutes.
  • The average price of a residential PV installation in Q2 2014 was $3.92/watt, 41% lower than 2010.
  • Since the second quarter of 2010, the average price of a solar panel has declined by 64%.
  • Over 6,500 MW of PV is forecasted to come online in 2014, representing 36% growth over 2013's record installation levels.

All data from SEIA/GTM Research "U.S. Solar Market Insight: Q2 2014"


InfoCast Solar Securitization
New York, NY
September 30, 2014

ELFA Annual Convention
San Diego, CA
October 19-21, 2014

Solar Power International
Las Vegas, NV
October 20-23, 2014

NEFA Expo Regional
Teaneck, New Jersey
November 16-17, 2014

Distributed Solar Summit
San Diego, CA
November 17-19, 2014

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GreatAmerica Portfolio Services | One GreatAmerica Plaza | 625 First Street SE | Cedar Rapids, IA 52401
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Joe Andries

Joe Andries, Vice President and General Manager of GreatAmerica Portfolio Services Group LLC, Prior to joining GreatAmerica in 2010, Joe was the Senior Vice President and General Manager of US Bank’s Portfolio Services and Small Ticket Capital Markets Divisions.

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