Booth Aimed To Raise Awareness Among Dealers

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More than 100 credit union executives gathered here as part of the throng of 30,000 on hand for the 2004 National Automobile Dealer Association (NADA) Convention and Exposition. The exhibit and events coordinated by Credit Union Direct Lending (CUDL), the Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.-based indirect auto-lending program.

The meeting marked the first time credit unions sponsored a large booth in the trade show designed to raise awareness of credit unions as partners to auto dealers. The America's Credit Union brand and theme of "80 Million Reasons Why" was used to illustrate the unity of the credit union industry. Hundreds of dealers visited the booth where a motorcycle giveaway was among the featured promotions. Larry Tucker of Petersburg Ford/Chrysler won the 2004 Harley Davidson Fat Boy.

"This event successfully raised the visibility of the credit unions within the auto industry," stated Tony Boutelle, President/CEO CU Direct Corp.. "Credit unions account for a significant portion of the auto lending market and having a visible presence among the captives, banks, and sub prime financing organizations was essential for educating and building stronger relationships with dealerships."

Added Chis Oldag, Senior VP-Lending with Patelco Credit Union in San Francisco, "This was a great opportunity to re-introduce the credit union movement to the automobile industry. With more than 80 million credit union members driving and financing cars there has never been a better event for the dealers and credit unions to build our relationships and better serve our members. The ideas exchanged and a discussion between our industry's top lenders with some of the nations leading auto dealers was invigorating."

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