M. D. Weiss LLC, a financial consulting firm, provides its services to financial services executives and investors regarding credit risk management, regulatory compliance relationship management and strategic direction as they pertain to commercial and consumer finance interests.
A highly effective and well-regarded executive with a strong entrepreneurial perspective, Mitch Weiss can quickly evaluate an organization’s limiting issues in order to recommend the course of action required to meaningfully improve financial performance.
To do this work, Mitch draws upon his more than thirty years of financial services experience, at banks and non-banks alike, but always with a distinctive point of view—that of an entrepreneur. The recommendations he makes are among the first he would implement, if he were responsible for the subject business. The firm’s approach is thoughtful, thorough and respectful; the recommendations actionable. For this very reason, they offer to collaboratively develop implementation plans for their recommendations or to assist in directing the implementation itself.
Mitchell D. Weiss formed his financial consulting firm to assist banks, finance companies, small businesses and ventures. His broad and diverse engagements have been in the areas of strategic direction, organizational optimization credit risk management and regulatory compliance management.
Immediately prior to forming M. D. Weiss, Mitch was Chairman and CEO of Center Capital Corporation, a specialty finance company, and a wholly owned subsidiary of Webster Bank (NYSE: WBS). He joined Center Capital in August 1992, and quickly helped restore it to profitability. Named CEO in 1995, Mitch changed the company’s strategic direction by reconstituting the management team, streamlining the organization, implementing process-redesign initiatives and executing a new approach to market. In 1996, he led a leveraged buyout of the company, for which he raised both equity and debt capital. He sold the firm to Webster Bank in March 2001, having quintupled its size. Under Mitch’s leadership and through his departure in 2008, Center Capital’s financial, operational and credit performance metrics ranked among the best in its industry.
In addition to his consulting practice, Mitch is an Executive-in-Residence at the University of Hartford, co-founder of the university’s Center for Personal Financial Responsibility—a financial literacy resource for students and the Greater Hartford community-at-large, and adjunct faculty at Rutgers University. He is the author of five books including Life Happens: A Practical Course on Personal Finance from College to Career and Business Happens: A Practical Guide to Entrepreneurial Finance for Small Businesses and Professional Practices, and Practical Finance: A Straightforward Guide to Personal and Entrepreneurial Finance, each of which the underlying texts for the courses that he developed and teaches at both universities, and online via his YouTube channel and on Udemy.com, where at last count roughly 17,000 students are registered for his courses, worldwide.
Credit Risk Management
GOAL: Assess quality and effectiveness of risk management processes, benchmarked to best practices and regulatory expectations
- Evaluate adequacy and efficacy of:
- Underwriting rationale, methodologies, policies, practices and their oversight
- Organizational design, communication flow and personnel competencies
- Process design and flow
- Interface between portfolio management disciplines
- Globally assess adequacy, robustness and utility of reporting
- Advise on credit risk management planning for and integration of commercial finance acquisitions and intrapreneurial ventures
Regulatory Compliance Relationship Management
GOAL: Facilitate compliance for matters subject to regulatory oversight without compromising competitive position of commercial finance interests
- Assess current status of relationship with principal regulator(s) with special attention paid to unresolved examination issues
- At the request of client, work directly with examiners to glean their perspectives on these gaps as well as facilitate timely and equitable resolutions
- Assist in design, implementation and testing of measures to ensure continuing conformity
GOAL: Assess business strategies for fit, effectiveness, and potential by evaluating:
- Business model premise and historical performance
- Organizational design, communication flow and personnel competencies
- Product design, promotion and execution
- Process design and flow within the context of operational efficiency
- Market position and competitive opportunity
- Economic potential, including financial harvesting options
- Engaged as interim-CEO for the commercial finance subsidiary of a top-ten U.S. bank, during which time accomplished the following in addition to day-to-day executive responsibilities:
- Designed a unique and thoroughly objective profitability-based incentive compensation plan to take into full effect return on risk-adjusted capital requirements associated with the Line of Business’ disparate financing structures, thereby encouraging higher returns while reducing front-end costs
- Devised a methodology to assess the individual financial performances of the Line’s discrete business segments, eliminating one and enhancing another in the process
- Refined certain existing and directed the design of a series of new MIS reports, all brought together to create a new and comprehensive Business Line performance “dashboard” to succinctly display; (i) key sale productivity metrics including success rates cross-referenced by origination channel and transactional specifics such as structure and economics; (ii) broad-ranging portfolio composition and credit performance data for enhanced risk management purposes and, (iii) key financial performance statistics for spot-view and trending purposes
- IRevised impairment testing rationale, policy and process in order to take into effect current economic conditions and peer practices, with due respect given to GAAP and regulatory limitations, resulting in a superior financial result
- Recommended fundamental revisions to the Line’s core business strategy so that it may take advantage of emerging market opportunities while at the same time, more effectively and decisively facilitate existing portfolio concentration, organizational design and parent/sub integration objectives
- Devised and directed the implementation of a redesign of the portfolio management process (loan administration through litigation), that also included changes in reporting lines and leadership personnel, for a $3 billion portfolio of consumer and residential loans
- Recommended organizational, procedural and Credit Risk Management changes to the commercial banking segment, segregating underwriting responsibilities from new business development activities as a regulatory response, and also recommended pricing model and incentive compensation program modifications to improve governance and productivity
- Designed the process flow, recommended personnel placements, reporting structure and facilitated the implementation of a new charge-off recovery management process for defaulted commercial and consumer loan and lease transactions
- Developed a series of consumer and commercial loan portfolio performance analytics used to modify front-end credit underwriting policies and practices
- Designed and facilitated implementation of new consumer and small business loan modification products, along with policies and procedures for use by loss mitigation teams
- Facilitated a regulatory response involving the development and implementation of a project plan for the reorganization and substantial process redesign of the Credit Risk Management function
- Redesigned sales incentive compensation programs for disparate commercial finance subsidiaries that fully aligned individual rewards with corporate objectives by incorporating productivity, profitability and credit performance standards
- Facilitated a regulatory response that involved the development of a corporate-wide credit risk concentration matrix, spanning all consumer and commercial business lines, incorporating limits for value, product type and financing structures counterpoised against business segments and sub-segments (i.e.; consumer v. commercial; middle market v. small business), geography, SIC, collateral type, sponsor group, counterparty risk, etc.
- Critically assessed the core business model, strategic fit and future prospects of a specialty finance subsidiary, facilitating its sale by advising the bank parent and investment bankers on organization and documentation of key performance data
- Facilitated a regulatory response by resolving a commercial finance subsidiary’s outstanding regulatory compliance issues (e.g.; BSA, AML, etc.), which was accomplished without sacrificing the business’s competitive advantage
- Assisted in the development and presentation of unique performance metrics that pertain to commercial and consumer portfolio segments for investor relations management purposes
- Performed forensic analysis of credit and contract underwriting failures and policy disconnects, and facilitated the implementation of corrective measures