Marcie Belles and LeAnne Graves
Apart from office closures and some shuffling of dealer-service
representatives, GMAC LLC dealers have yet to notice the
behind-the-scenes changes going on at the company – and that’s just
the way GMAC wants it.
GMAC announced in late February that it would close 75 per cent
of its auto finance offices and cut 15 per cent of its workforce in
the US and Canada as it works to reduce costs and regain
marketshare. The changes, though, are meant to be imperceptible to
dealers and customers, according to company spokeswoman Sue
GMAC will replace its business centre structure, retaining
branches only in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Pittsburgh and Toronto.
Many dealer reps will stay on, but they will be based out of home
offices. The 930 layoffs will span the gamut from administrative to
managerial. Systems will be automated where possible, primarily
with back-office operations like decisioning and processing.
Throughout the process and beyond, GMAC aims to keep its loan
volume growing. “We are streamlining operations, but we will have
the full breadth of capability,” Mallino said.
Even business at subsidiary Nuvell Financial Services, which
caters to financing of non-General Motors vehicles, is intended to
rise, she added.
In general, the captive has tightened its underwriting criteria,
dealers said, but that trend has been ongoing and GMAC is not alone
in the effort.
New carmaker scouts finance partners as it plans to
Automaker China America Cooperative Automotive Inc (Chamco Auto)
is in the process of securing lending partners for its vehicles,
slated to debut in the US next year.
Chamco Auto is striving to be a low-cost provider of cars in the
US, Canada, Puerto Rico and Mexico, offering vehicles at prices 20
per cent lower than those of comparable models, said chairman
So far, Chamco Auto has teamed up with Hebei Zhongxing
Automobile Co (ZX Auto), for production of an SUV model and a
pick-up truck, and the company is looking to partner with other
firms in order to offer a rounded lineup. “We want six to eight
models – a full selection – out there,” Pollack said.
So far 75 US dealers have signed up to sell the models. Chamco
Auto is looking to sign up 150 US dealers during its first
Source: Citigroup Inc
Motor Finance Issue: 42 – April 08
Published for the web: April 24 08 9:59
Last Updated: April 24 08 13:46