The Importance of Financial Empowerment: An Inside Look

Financial empowerment has become an important topic in recent years. It is a movement that focuses on helping individuals and communities to gain financial knowledge, resources, and access to financial services. The aim is to help people become more self-sufficient and make informed financial decisions. Joe Fobbe, Managing Director at Fifth Third Bank Asset Based Lending, has been at the forefront of this movement, helping businesses to access the funding they need to grow and succeed.

Fifth Third Bank is a leader in the financial industry, providing a wide range of services to individuals and businesses. The Asset Based Lending division of the bank provides lending opportunities starting from $10 million in commitments to assist middle market companies with M&A, growth, restructuring/refinancing, acquisitions, dividend recaps, and more. In addition, the division delivers access to the full range of banking products and services offered by Fifth Third Bank.

Joe Fobbe has been with Fifth Third Bank since 2013 and has consistently been a top performer and award winner, even as the bank has gone through frequent changes due to mergers, rebranding, acquisitions, and a sale to a top ten bank. In 2018, he was the top producer, closing four new relationships totaling $81 million in commitments and $56 million in fundings. In 2019, he was again the top producer, closing five new relationships totaling $65 million in commitments and $39 million in fundings, resulting in President’s Circle recognition.

In addition to his work at Fifth Third Bank, Joe Fobbe has been actively involved in the financial industry, serving as President of the Turnaround Management Association in 2009 and as President/Director of the Commercial Finance Association Midwest Chapter (now known as Secured Finance Network/SFNet) from 2016 to 2018. During his tenure as President of the Turnaround Management Association, he led the achievement of record attendance and sponsorship, raised the profile of the association by spearheading and hosting the first annual Executive Speaker Event featuring (Past) President George W. Bush, and received an Individual Achievement Award in 2009 and 2015.

At the Commercial Finance Association Midwest Chapter, Joe Fobbe was recruited by young emerging leaders of the chapter in early 2015 to serve three years on the Association’s Board and assist in driving the turnaround and revitalization of the association’s largest chapter. He reinvigorated the chapter with a variety of prestigious events, including the inaugural Black-Tie Fundraiser Event and Middle Market Capital Symposium that attracted 250 attendees and 20 sponsors. He also established an Advisory Committee to initiate and execute the restructuring of the chapter’s bylaws and organizational structure, which enhanced board oversight and expanded leadership opportunities for more members, with a focus on creating opportunities for many young professionals.

Joe Fobbe’s work at Fifth Third Bank and in the financial industry has been instrumental in driving financial empowerment and helping businesses to access the funding they need to succeed. His leadership and dedication to the industry have earned him numerous awards and recognitions, and he continues to be a driving force in the financial empowerment movement.

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