Financing: One Part of the Business Relationship Specialist’s Job

Keith Steiner

Keith Steiner, Federated’s business relationship specialist, reiterated the reminders of the past two months: financing is available through Federated to take advantage of lower interest rates and prices.

A Service. While growers can apply for crop input loans anytime through the end of winter, the sooner the better, since loan approval simplifies planning for spring planting. Steiner said, “Interest rates for CFA [Cooperative Finance Association, with whom Federated works] are between 4.75% and 5.25% -- variable rates depending on what inputs will be purchased from Federated.” These competitive interest rates come with a loan maturity/due date of March 15, 2019.

A Person. Keeping tabs on interest rates and helping growers find the best options for their input financing and purchases is just one aspect of Steiner’s role at Federated Co-ops. His job, centered in the accounting department, is somewhat that of a generalist who serves both growers and Federated’s C-store customers.

“I’m the guy people call to set up accounts or fix something,” said Steiner. The main aspect of his job is dealing with customers for the credit side of ag, or for the C-stores, and he also works with financing for agronomy customers.

Steiner also works with Federated’s inventory in each of Federated’s three areas of business: ag, energy, and retail. “I do the computer part of that,” he said, logging in products and setting up items in the system – including seed and crop inputs.

“When the agronomy locations have a question, they call me,” he said, “with questions on customer accounts, item codes, etc.” Steiner is the go-to guy for questions relating to computer systems (as they relate to customer interfaces). “I try to help answer questions and get things corrected,” he said.

With nearly four years under his belt at Federated, this University of North Dakota grad has found his niche. “I try to keep everybody happy – from customers to co-op workers – and make sure things are correct so that things run smoothly,” he said.

Steiner will be the first to say that getting ready for spring starts with getting crop inputs and financing lined up while there’s still snow on the ground. Contact Keith or your Federated Agronomist to get started.