CFLA at a Glance: About the Association

The Canadian Finance & Leasing Association (CFLA) is the only organization advocating the interests of the asset-based financing, vehicle and equipment leasing industry in Canada. Through CFLA, members help shape the industry’s future within the competitive financial services sector.

Established in 1993 through the merger of the Canadian Automotive Leasing Association (CALA) and the Equipment Lessors Association of Canada (ELAC), the Association has grown from an initial membership of 61 companies to over 220 companies today.

Mission

The Canadian Finance & Leasing Association supports, informs, and represents members to advance our industry.

Goals

The Association has three key responsibilities:

  • Industry Advocacy. CFLA proactively advocates to key publics (government, media, associations, finance industry) to promote the relevance and impact of the sector and to influence legislation and regulation.
  • Industry Intelligence. CFLA provides research and information to help members make better informed business decisions.
  • Professional Development. CFLA provides relevant education and development opportunities to advance industry awareness and member success.

Activities

CFLA organizes several high-profile events throughout the year, including an Annual Conference bringing together in 500 industry leaders from companies across the sector, networking and informational events organized by its Women in Asset Finance initiative, and an annual Golf Tournament in Toronto.

The Association also conducts several valuable research initiatives to assist members in their industry intelligence and benchmarking efforts. These include the Canadian Market Overview, Canadian Equipment Finance Activity Survey, Business Confidence Survey, Compensation Survey, and End-User Survey.

Moreover, CFLA offers the Canadian Lease Education On-demand (CLEO), a multi-tier education program designed to enhance general understanding of the asset-based financing, equipment and vehicle leasing business in Canada.

In partnership with Dalhousie University, CFLA runs a summer co-op program to facilitate talent recruiting for the industry.

CFLA’s activities are summarized in its Annual Report.

Membership profile

Members range from large multinationals to national and smaller regional domestic companies, crossing the financial services spectrum from manufacturers’ finance companies and independent leasing companies, to banks, insurance companies, and suppliers to the industry such as law and accounting firms:

  • Regular Members.Enterprises in the active business of asset-based financing and leasing
  • Associate Members.  Enterprises that provide services to the industry (such as law and accounting firms, funders, software developers, auction houses, etc.)

As of 2020, CFLA has 215 members, with 64 percent regular and 46 percent associate members.

Governance

CFLA is a federal not-for-profit corporation located in Toronto, Ontario.

A Board of Directors, nominated from the Association membership and elected to serve two-year terms, determines CFLA’s policies. It is composed of business leaders representing a cross-section of the industry in terms of market size, area of business and geographical location.

The Executive Committee is composed of a Chairman, Vice-Chairmen, a Secretary-Treasurer with one or more members at large plus the President. The Executive Committee is appointed by the Board.

The Annual General Meeting of Members is open to all CFLA members and is usually held during the fall annual national conference.

Much of the active work of the Association is conducted within its volunteer committees:

  • Accounting
  • Automotive Finance Working Group
  • Education & Program
  • Fleet
  • Future Leaders Initiative
  • Human Resources
  • Legal
  • Research
  • Small Ticket Funders
  • Tax
  • Women in Asset Finance

In their relevant area of expertise, committees serve as:

  • CFLA’s radar. Proactively bringing forward intelligence, issues, challenges and opportunities affecting the industry
  • CFLA’s sounding board. To react to issue and advise on policy options
  • An exchange on experience, expertise best practices
  • A channel to circulate information relevant the industry

Association staff

A full-time professional staff at the Toronto office manages the Association.