Wren Rex’s path to equipment finance originations was far from a clear one. Rex first entered the finance arena as a mutual fund call center employee for GE Asset Management. Shortly after joining the team, she passed her Series 7 and 63 exams and was then recruited by the mutual fund’s sales team.
At just 23 years old, she found herself providing guidance to GE retirees about how to best deploy their retirement savings. This experience was a formative one, as it not only taught her valuable lessons about financial products, but it also ignited her passion for people and deal originations.
The balance of her 20 years at GE was spent In a variety of roles, ranging from sales to marketing to quality control to operations, culminating in four years spent in GE Capital’s commercial finance business selling equipment finance products to food and beverage companies. Rex credits her diverse background with how she approaches the sales process, treats her customers, develops her business relationships and works with her internal team.
Rex is now a managing director at Encina Equipment Finance and has been at the company for four years, joining in 2019 as the first direct originator for the then two-year-old equipment finance platform. It was her trust in the company’s leadership, with whom she had worked closely when she was with GE Capital, that gave her the confidence to make the jump, and she has never looked back.
“Wren does not worry too much about job descriptions,” Rick Matte, president and CEO of Encina Equipment Finance, says. “She cannot help herself but to dip her toe into operations and risk when it means getting the deal done and advocating for her customer. She is pleasantly persistent and works tirelessly to make sure her customers’ expectations are met.”
Rex, who spent three years at Prudential Capital before joining Encina Equipment Finance, is not usually a risk taker, but nearly every role she has taken throughout her career has put her into a field about which she knew little to nothing. However, she has found success each time she’s taken on a new challenge. While Rex credits GE for providing the support and encouragement needed to make each of these jumps in her career, she also prides herself on taking the risks that ultimately enabled her to grow and develop into the leader she is today.
As a leader within the equipment finance industry, Rex encourages the next generation of women that will help steer the industry forward, advising younger women in the industry to know and display their own value.
“Know that you, as a female leader, add a lot of value to this space,” Rex says. “l firmly believe being a woman has helped versus. hurt my career. I relish being ‘the only woman in the room: allowing me the opportunity to demonstrate my worth.”
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