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Leasecomm Stops Accepting New Business

Waltham, Mass.-based MicroFinancial Inc. (formerly Boyle Leasing Technologies), announced that it no longer is accepting new lease agreements through its Leasecomm subsidiary and is shrinking its loan-origination business by nearly one-third.

In addition, Dr. Peter Bleyleben is stepping down as CEO of MicroFinancial but will remain Chairman of the Board. Richard Latour, MicroFinancial President and COO, will assume the additional role and title of CEO.

Through Leasecomm, MicroFinancial specializes in microticket financing - leasing commercial products and services priced between $500 and $10,000 and where the monthly payment range is between $10 and $200. The company was started in 1986 and had grown to 300 employees.

Leasecomm leases equipment, such as ATMs, credit card terminals, espresso machines, computers, vending machines, water-purification equipment and wireless communication devices to small and midsize businesses through a network of more than 1,100 ISOs. The company also leases to businesses with limited or poor credit histories.

MicroFinancial said it plans to cut 31 percent of its workforce in the loan-origination business. The company's intent is to reduce new lease originations and focus on lessees with better credit.

MicroFinancial has suspended indefinitely all new loan originations until it can secure further financing.

Since the third quarter of October 2000, the company said it has been moving away from underwriting low-grade leasing businesses to focusing more on higher-rated businesses.

MicroFinancial's new business strategy is to continue to collect on its existing portfolio of leases and to leverage its core technology and services platform until it can re-enter the microticket marketplace.

Existing revolving credit lines have been converted to three- year term loans, as provided for under existing agreements.

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