Pacific Rim Capital Inc. could become the next equipment lease player to enter the asset-backed market, with the hire of securitization expert Eric Eckes from Mitsubishi Motors Credit of America. Eckes will head funding efforts in Pacific's newly created position of chief financial officer.

The rapidly growing company, based in Irvine, Calif., finances an array of items from computers to general office equipment to forklifts, and over the last nine years has a developed a need for a capital-raising strategist with experience in the asset-backed market.

"It's my expectation that you're not going to hear the last of me," Eckes said.

Securitization is one of the main financing avenues being explored at Pacific. Since 1990, it has cultivated over 750 corporate clients and amassed a portfolio of $275 million in leases. The company is described as a "general equipment lessor and reseller" of desktop and LAN/WAN products from IBM, Compaq, Hewlett Packard, Cisco, Bay Networks and 3Com. The company also offers technical support to its clients.

Eckes said securitization efforts won't be immediate, due in part to the fact that he will not officially leave Mitsubishi until later this week. But he said he looks forward to that time as "that opportunity is there."

- SK

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