WOODCLIFF LAKE, N.J. — Alphera Financial Services' portfolio of serviced assets, which was launched in 2006 to provide BMW's award-winning customer service to other franchises owned by its dealers, announced late last week that it is expanding, in addition to reporting that it has reached the $1 billion mark.

A business unit of BMW Group Financial Services, Alphera basically offers a number of dealer-direct retail loans and commercial finance products.

Alphera Financial Services indicated is has broadened its service beyond BMW dealer-owned franchises to encompass new-car franchised dealerships of all makes and models.

Alphera is backed by the same infrastructure that helped BMW Financial earn the top ranking in dealer satisfaction for retail leasing in the J.D. Power and Associates Dealer Financing Satisfaction Study for four consecutive years, officials pointed out.

"In less than two years' time, Alphera has seen amazing growth for its innovative and competitive offerings, and it represents a crucial piece of our strategy of building on and complementing our traditional captive finance business," said Fred Isele, president of Alphera.

"By the end of this year, our business will be serving dealers in 19 markets as we continue to roll out our business across the U.S," he continued.

BMW Group Financial Services said its U.S. portfolio of serviced assets crossed the $25 billion threshold last fall, reaching the significant milestone on the strength of the company's traditional financial services products and the introduction of new business lines, including Alphera and up2drive.com, which is a unique direct-to-consumer auto lending service.

The BMW Group Financial Services portfolio of serviced assets now exceeds $28 billion.

For more information on the company, visit http://fs.bmwusa.com/bmwfspulp/.