In their merger to form NextGear Capital, Manheim Automotive Financial Services and Dealer Services Corp. each bring something unique to the table that can benefit dealers and auctions.
That’s the word from Brian Geitner, president of the new company, who had held that same role for DSC and talked with Auto Remarketing on Friday about the launch of NextGear.
“DSC definitely brings some of the latest technologies. We’re a company that has always been known for that. I jokingly say that we’re a technology company that happens to lend money. And it gets my employees minds in the right room,” Geitner said when asked about the respective benefits each company in the merger offers.
“On the MAFS side, (they bring) great customer service; (they’re) just know for industry customer service, with how deep those relationships are. I’ve interviewed plenty of those dealers on the phone, and in talking with them, there’s just a deep relationship there. There’s trust,” he continued. “And it probably just comes with that whole MAFS brand. And so melding those two things together, launching NextGear, I think we’re going to get the best of both worlds out of that.”
News of the newly launched inventory finance entity was announced Friday morning.
NextGear Capital — which said it serves more than 17,000 dealers and 1,000 auctions throughout North America — will maintain headquarters in Carmel, Ind. A new facility is currently under construction.
In its statement announcing the new entity, the company emphasized the “cutting-edge technology” NextGear Capital will afford dealers, letting them floor plan vehicles 24-7 from anywhere.
“Under the new company, customers will enjoy access to more pricing options than ever before, including customized inventory finance options tailored to suit their specific needs,” officials said.
“The company sets a new standard for buying and selling vehicles at live and online auctions, with a versatile line of credit that works seamlessly at auction sites across the U.S. and Canada,” they added.
NextGear Capital indicated that a wide range of floor plan purchases for which customers can use their working capital. These include retail, wholesale, salvage or specialty (rental/heavy trucks/RVs/receivables financing) purchases.
When customers make purchases, NextGear Capital said it backs them up with services like Retail Lender Connection, Collateral Protection, Records Management and Title Services.
“When you do business with NextGear Capital, you get a lot more than just financing options,” said Shane O’Dell, the company’s chief operating officer. “You receive a robust array of services and support to help you acquire and move your inventory.”
In the conversation with Auto Remarketing, Geitner went into more detail about the benefits customers will see from this move.
“In bringing these companies together, we’re getting two large customer bases that complement each other well on the same operating and technological platform. So that’s going to offer the industry overall some efficiencies,” he said, noting the nearly 1,000 universal sources NextGear works with, “probably 500 or 600” of which are auctions of ranging sizes.
Geitner emphasized that the company’s “passion” is “to find tomorrow’s technology today.” As such, NextGear is aiming to provide improved interfaces for both auctions and for dealers.
“And that’s going to be through simple user interfaces. Taking some things that are really complex and distilling it down to a simple transaction on a smartphone or a tablet,” he said. “ And as we evolve, we’re going to continue to improve on those things. So, I think we’re going to have a larger platform to help those dealers transact business faster, and therefore, more profitably.”
When asked about his goals for the new company for the rest of 2013, Geitner stressed the importance of service without interruption.
“We’re just beginning this journey, so it’s going to take us the bulk of this year to actually complete this merger. With that, my goal is uninterrupted service while we (complete the merger) to our customers. Now that’s both auctions and dealers,” he continued. “The way we have got it choreographed throughout the year and the amount of resources — dollars and people — that we’re putting to it, I am very confident that it is business as usual. In fact, it may even improve with some of the things technology-wise I’m going to be rolling out for our customers.”
Geitner explained some of the technology goals and amenities the company would like to offer its customers.
He noted that the technological push to smartphones and tablets is often over-complicated and sometimes there’s just way to much information. He wants to optimize that process.
“My passion would be — we’ve got people working on this, it’s more of a longer-term goal — is to get the right information at the right moment into our customers hands. To me, that optimizes, to the best of our ability, their decision point,” Geitner explained.
“And so they can make the best buying and selling decisions, and/or inventory hold or sourcing decisions, whether they’re standing in the lane, on a tablet looking at a digital lane or back at the office on their desktop. It’s really knowing your customer and figuring out what’s crucial to them and when, versus just data dumping.”