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Nov. 2, 2009 – Finance Digest

November 2, 2009
Filed under Features

Arctic Cat, GE reach wholesale financing deal
Arctic Cat Inc. announced it has entered into an agreement with GE Capital, Commercial Distribution Finance for it to become the exclusive provider of floorplan financing for Arctic Cat’s U.S. dealers.
The new multi-year financing program will replace Arctic Cat’s current financing agreement with Textron Financial Corp., which had previously announced its intent to exit the dealer floorplan business. The new financing program is expected to begin Dec. 1.
“Arctic Cat and GE Capital share a commitment to meet the financial needs of our ATV and snowmobile dealers,” said Christopher Twomey, Arctic Cat’s chairman and chief executive officer. “We are excited and pleased with our new partnership and expect it to continue to provide innovative financing programs and superior service.”
Schwinn teams up with Sheffield to offer financing
Schwinn Motor Sports has entered into an agreement with Sheffield Financial to offer
consumer financing for its line of motor scooters and Tomberlin ATVs and UTVs.
“Our recent agreement with Sheffield Financial to extend consumer financing for Schwinn Motor Sports products is another example of our commitment to our dealers to give them as many tools as possible to close sales, grow their business and move inventory,” said Ed Buckle, director of operations for The Tomberlin Group.
“Since Tomberlin acquired the rights to the Schwinn Motor Sports brand, we have been focused on giving our dealers new programs to help stimulate sales at the showroom level. It has been our belief the shrinking availability of consumer financing over the past months has resulted in lost sales. Our partnership with Sheffield and our plans to offer new financing programs for Schwinn Motor Sports dealers is meant to drive sales at retail,” Buckle said.
“The announcement of the consumer financing program is the beginning of our plans to bring new vitality to the Schwinn Motor Sports brand,” said Mike Tomberlin, CEO of the Tomberlin Group. “We are very aware of the strength of the Schwinn brand and we are committed to bringing to market new products and programs that will help build it into one of the strongest brands in the powersport industry.”
“The Schwinn brand is a household name and a symbol of quality,” said Jack Snow, president of Sheffield Financial. “We are pleased to add them to our list of manufacturer-supported finance programs.”
To start off the retail program, Schwinn Motor Sports will provide the dealer network with aggressive programs. Dealers can offer 3.9 percent for 36 months, 5.9 percent for 48 months or 6 months free interest/no payment effective through Dec. 31, to qualified buyers. These programs are designed to help the dealer network sell inventory now and through the holiday season.

Advanstar announces company restructuring move
Advanstar Communications, the media company behind the Indianapolis Dealer Expo, has eliminated $385 million in debt in a restructuring move, the company announced.
As part of the restructuring, the company also is receiving $35 million in new capital from its principal stakeholders, including Anchorage Advisors and Veronis Suhler Stevenson. The press release did not indicate how much debt Advanstar still has nor other details on the restructuring move.
“This transaction is an important development for Advanstar,” Joe Loggia, Advanstar CEO, said in a press release. “We are especially pleased that we have been able to reach this milestone while continuing to provide our customers with superior service and marketing solutions.”
Advanstar, which also has a presence in the fashion and life sciences industries, was acquired by a group of companies led by Veronis Suhler Stevenson in 2007 for $1.1 billion. The company publishes nearly 70 publications, 267 electronic products and Web sites, and produces nearly 150 events, according to Foliomag.com.

XpressCredit adds director of lender development
XpressCredit, a provider of a Web-based, indirect lending platform, has hired Rory Noske as its director of lender development.
Noske brings more than 18 years of experience, developing business relationships in the automotive financial services sector.
Prior to XpressCredit, Noske spent 11 years at AmeriCredit. He began as a general manager at AmeriCredit, and through his efforts became vice president of national sales. Previously, he was employed at Charter One.
“We’re very pleased to have Rory join the XpressCredit team. With his sales experience and lender relationships, he’s a great addition,” said Mark Louer, executive vice president.
“The leaders of the automotive finance industry recognize the requirement for leading-edge technology to capture market share and to succeed in this challenging economy. The opportunity to join an innovator the caliber of XpressCredit comes at exactly the right time,” remarked Noske.
Founded in 1999, XpressCredit is a New York corporation headquartered in Syracuse, N.Y.

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