About Us 2015

About Us

Founded in 2000, Drake Finance was originally created to facilitate international trade for U.S. companies. Our mission was to help U.S.-based businesses grow by providing the necessary liquidity for them to provide their international customers with financing. Since then, our company has grown to include a broad range of products and services aimed at helping U.S. companies succeed locally and in the global marketplace.

Headquartered in Miami, Florida, Drake Finance serves U.S. companies nationwide and provides its clients from all over the world with innovative and accessible financial solutions.

Lender Profile

  • Since 2000, Drake Finance has financed over USD 200 million in U.S. exports worldwide.
  • Drake Finance is an approved lender of the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).
  • Drake Finance holds an Ex-Im Bank Master Guarantee Agreement for multi-year international equipment financing.
  • Drake Finance is among select Originators nationwide providing U.S. companies with Ex-Im Bank’s Global Credit Express loans.
  • Drake Finance is a member of the PEFCO’s Small Business Lender Council.
  • Drake Finance supports the efforts of Ex-Im Bank, the SBA, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in helping small-business U.S. companies succeed.

Managing Partners

The principals of Drake Finance Group, Richard H. Lopez, Esq. and Maria T. Currier, Esq. are U.S.-trained attorneys that have lived and worked overseas.  Both have advised U.S. and foreign companies on matters relating to trade finance, company formation, commercial transactions, and corporate finance.

Richard H. Lopez, Esq.

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In addition to practicing law, Richard Lopez is the managing principal of Drake Finance, an approved Direct Guaranteed Lender of the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank). Richard served as the Director of Enterprise Florida (Florida Department of Commerce) and Special Projects Advisor to the Venezuelan-American Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Caracas, Venezuela. In this position, he was responsible for developing trade and investment opportunities between Florida and Venezuela. Richard was also an international legal consultant during his stint in Latin America and worked for law firms in Brussels, Belgium, Lisbon, Portugal and London, England.

Richard completed his Bachelor of Arts in International Relations at Florida International University and speaks Spanish, French, and Portuguese fluently. He earned a Master of International Management from Thunderbird, The School of Global Management. While attending Thunderbird, Richard completed a semester program at la Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara. An avid learner, he also earned a Master of Arts in International Studies from the University of Miami. He holds a Juris Doctor from Touro College, Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center, with semester programs at the University of Miami School of Law and the University of Detroit School of Law (London Program).

Richard is a member of the Florida Bar and the District of Columbia Bar. He is admitted before the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida and the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Richard is a Board Certified International Lawyer and a licensed and registered export credit and political risk insurance broker with the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

Maria T. Currier, Esq.

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Maria Currier is an AV rated attorney and is featured as one of Florida Super Lawyers Top 50 Florida Women Lawyers. Maria’s practice focuses on corporate mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, corporate finance, and international cross-border transactions. She has represented clients in the healthcare sector and technology companies, from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies.

Maria is a partner at the international law firm of Holland & Knight LLP.   Prior to that position, Maria was a partner at Hunton & Williams, LLP, and before that Maria served as the U.S. Resident Partner for the Caracas office of the international law firm of Steel Hector & Davis LLP.

Maria is fluent in Spanish and holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from St. Louis University, a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Miami, and a Juris Doctor from the University of Miami School of Law.  She has authored numerous articles relating to corporate and health care issues. She is a member of the Florida Bar and is certified in health law.

Director of Trade

Robert K. Sloan

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With over 35 years in the field of international trade finance, Bob Sloan has extensive senior management expertise in global marketing and new business development. He is considered a trade finance expert with vast experience in negotiating financial agreements, as well as having vast knowledge of letters of credit and all trade finance products.

Prior to his position at Drake Finance, Bob was with Australian New Zealand Bank as First Vice President in New York City. He has also held senior management positions with Barclays Bank, Dow, and Ingersoll Rand.

Bob has a strong background in international and domestic banking, credit, portfolio management, trend/economic analyses, trade and project finance, as well as contracts.   He is an exemplary manager adept at hiring, training and developing staff, and overseeing effective work-teams.  He has a successful track record of developing and enhancing client relationships with positive bottom-line impact.

Bob earned his B.A. in Mathematics at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, New Jersey.  He then completed his graduate studies in Business and Finance at the C.W. Post College in Brookville, New York.  He completed additional coursework in Domestic and International Finance, Banking, and Credit.

Bob is a licensed and registered export credit and political risk insurance broker with the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank).

George Nunaihed

George

Joining the team in 2013, George Nunaihed is the latest addition to Drake Finance. George is fluent in Spanish and earned his B.B.A. in Finance and International Business at Florida International University in Miami, Florida. He has over a decade of experience in trade finance, corporate finance, credit underwriting, loan administration, portfolio management and business development.

As Chief Credit Officer, he is responsible for evaluating credit and the financial position of applicants for export-related loans as well as communicating with clients at all stages of the financing process.

Carolina Arevalo

Carolina

Carolina Arevalo joined Drake Finance in late 2011, and has been vital in strengthening client relationships and expanding our portfolio through continued exceptional client service and impeccable portfolio management.

Carolina earned her B.A. in Economics from the University of Miami, focusing on International Trade and Finance. She speaks English and Spanish fluently and practices Mandarin in her spare time.  She is a member of the World Trade Center Fort Lauderdale and the Organization for Women in International Trade (OWIT).

Gabriela I Crespo

Gabriela is the VP of the International Trade Finance sector. She is a seasoned global trade professional who joined us after working in the banking industry for more than 15 years covering the South East. In fact, she spent most of her career in correspondent banking at Chase, American Express Bank and Standard Chartered Bank; covering South America, US and Canada.

Gabriela was born in Buenos Aires and moved to New York in 1999 with American Express Bank and to Georgia in 2004 to run their South East Representative Office. After 11 years of living in Atlanta and working at Regions Bank and Suntrust she is now a Floridian, where she continues developing her passion for Global Trade at Drake Finance.

She has a Masters degree in Child and Development Psychology from Centro de Altos Estudios en Ciencias Exactas, Buenos Aires-Argentina. Gabriela is fully bilingual (Spanish/English).

During her free time, loves to spend time with her children, travel and exercise.