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GMAC plans to ‘own’ F&I

Financial services provider GMAC has set its field-based account managers new targets which it believes will focus their minds on driving forward dealers’ F&I performance.

Those targets include assessing retailers’ perception of the 22 account managers’ performance as well as measurable objectives on volumes sold and penetration levels.

Dennis Foley, GMAC UK managing director, sales and marketing, says: “We have to try and own F&I performance in the showroom. Our account managers have to make dealers money.”

GMAC’s priority is to raise penetration and income units delivered for its Vauxhall, Saab and Chevrolet retailer customers.

“There are huge opportunities within the network, such as additional insurance products and type of finance products sold, and we want to be stronger on Saab and Chevrolet,” Foley says.

Payment Protection Insurance is one growth opportunity. Vauxhall network penetration has slumped from 25% to 8% since the introduction of the FSA regulations.

Foley also points to the wide spread of new car finance penetration across the network – the best dealers achieve more than 60%; the worst are below 20%.

He claims that dealers with high finance penetration enjoy a triple whammy: profits from the sale of the plan, uplift on spend and loyalty that is around 20% higher than cash customers.

“Cash customers buy on price – they have a fixed point and they are looking to come down from that, so it is hard to sell accessories, additional insurance products and options,” Foley says.

“Finance customers spend more in the showroom and they are more likely to be loyal to the dealership.”

GMAC is redeveloping its Choices PCP plan. It started trialling the product in the final quarter of last year.

Choices is designed to appeal to younger customers who are happy to pay a lower monthly fee with a lower down payment and change cars after three years. The company is also developing a PCP product for Hummer.

Foley wants account managers to educate the network so dealers can sell all of them. More training and support is needed to give dealers confidence and knowledge to offer products, which is key to raising finance sales Foley adds: “The most successful dealers are those who offer F&I to every customer – it’s that simple.”

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