When the phone rings at a buy-here, pay-here dealership, it’s not uncommon for customers to be calling the store about a vehicle mechanical problem.
To help consumers who might not have the financial resources for major repairs, Confident Financial Solutions (CFS) and WebBank rolled out a new solution, leveraging the capability of the vehicle owner’s smartphone.
The platform introduced on Monday by CFS and WebBank lets a service adviser at a dealership or repair center offer customers another way to pay for repairs. A consumer completes a simple, four-step loan application process — from a smartphone — and receives a credit decision within minutes for up to $7,500. The loan is made by WebBank, a nationally-licensed, FDIC-insured, state-chartered bank.
“CFS, over the past four years, has grown to be one of the nation’s largest providers of installment loans to consumers made through auto repair service centers and car dealerships. As such, we understand how hectic things can get in a service department,” CFS chief executive officer Richard Counihan said. “This innovative solution will help improve service adviser productivity and enhance the customer experience at an often tension-filled moment.
“What’s more, this fueled-by WebBank solution will aid our expansion plans as it supports our drive to offer ‘auto loans you can trust’ to more people in more places,” Counihan continued.
“Most important, however, this partnership signals that CFS has fulfilled WebBank’s rigorous evaluation process and joined their select group of partners. Our relationship with WebBank allows us to offer a new, differentiated financial product that will benefit our customers and the hundreds of thousands of consumers they serve,” Counihan went on to say.
From what CFS calls the “point of need,” the service adviser’s desk, WebBank will issue, fund and hold the loans originated through the CFS platform on its own balance sheet. Drawing on CFS’ massive database of repair costs and its own deep insight into loan criteria, WebBank is able to evaluate all factors and then, in mere moments, provide approval status on the consumer’s smartphone, keeping the entire process private and embarrassment-free.
“WebBank is pleased to partner with CFS and bring to the automotive sector a new and better way to help their customers handle unexpected financial burdens that can occur when vehicle repairs are needed,” WebBank executive vice president Jason Lloyd said.
“As with all our partners, WebBank strives to offer financial products that exceed the most stringent qualification and compliance requirements in the banking industry while providing an exceptional experience between the bank and its consumers obtaining loans,” Lloyd continued.
According to a recent survey by AAA, the travel services organization, one in three motorists, or 64 million U.S. drivers, would not be able to pay for an unexpected vehicle repair without going into debt.
“As a long-time user of CFS services, we are excited by the new WebBank-fueled solution,” said Dan Johnson, vice president of fixed operations at Larry H. Miller Dealerships.
“We’re committed to excellence for our customers and always looking for ways to enhance their service experience. This service offers our customers yet another way to finance their auto repair expenses,” Johnson added.