Jun. 15, 2009 – Assurant exits 20 group business
June 15, 2009
Filed under Features
Assurant Solutions’ recent decision to scale back its powersports market divisions means the industry’s largest 20-group club will have a new owner.
Assurant Solutions, an F&I provider, told Powersports Business it has entered into an agreement to sell its 20 clubs and Traffic Log Pro businesses to Gart Sutton, a longtime industry consultant and dealer trainer. Assurant also mentioned in a communication with the industry that it had closed down its Denver office and will close its Insureco operations effective Aug. 1.
Jimmy Atkinson, senior vice president of Assurant Solutions’ vehicle service contracts, said the company will continue to have a presence in the powersports industry “working side by side with (dealership) salespeople and managers to add profitability through our training and F&I products.”
“Our decision was to focus on our core business,” he ssaid, “vehicle service contracts, and we will continue to deliver strong financial results to our powersports dealers.”
In late April, Assurant Solutions’ parent company reported a dramatic drop in net income in its first quarter compared to the previous-year period. Assurant’s quarterly net income dropped 57 percent.
“As many powersports dealers are doing today, Assurant looked at every area of our businesses for contribution to the bottom line,” Atkinson said. “We made the decision to exit the 20 Club, Insureco and Traffic Log Pro businesses so that we could focus on our core business of selling service contracts.”
Atkinson said he expects a smooth transition for the 20 groups, which total more than
270 dealers according to a press release from Gart Sutton and Associates.
“As readers of Powersports Business know, Gart delivers results to his dealers and takes a hands on, on-site approach as we do at Assurant,” Atkinson said. “He has the utmost integrity and puts his clients first. Also, he has developed technology that will take the 20 club business to a higher level and provide the dealers with real-time, actionable data.”
Sutton, in a press release, said his company is “looking forward to helping the newly expanded Best Operators Club not only survive in these tough economic times, but to thrive.”
Atkinson noted there is “an understandable emotional effect for many of our 20 club dealers. We are trying to assist them in anyway we can and make the transition seamless.”
Assurant acquired the
20 groups — then known as the RPM Group — in early 2007 from the owners of RideNow Powersports Management Group, the nation’s largest dealership group.
Atkinson also noted Assurant is working with Insureco dealers “to transition them over the next 60 days to another provider and they should see no interruption of service.”
— Neil Pascale