Banc One Corp. and Transamerica Commercial Finance Corp. said they are teaming up to give boating and recreational vehicle dealers a package of wholesale and retail financing.
The agreement allows the Columbus, Ohio-based company's lead bank to expand its indirect loan business through immediate access to some 2,500 dealers across the nation.
"Forming a business relationship with Transamerica presents Bank One with a unique opportunity to gain a national presence through the expansion of our indirect lending program," said David Webber, senior vice president of national retail lending division at Bank One, Columbus.
The agreement allows Transamerica Commercial Finance to fill in a missing part of its longstanding relationship with boating and recreational vehicle dealers.
Jim McArdle, Transamerica Commercial's marketing director, said the company has long provided a wholesale loan program to dealers. Now, it will offer a competitively priced installment program, with quick turnarounds on applications and a toll-free telephone number for customer service.
The program is scheduled to begin Nov. 1, and officials expect business to be good. Interest among dealers attending a recent boat and RV show in Chicago exceeded expectations, according to Banc One spokeswoman Lisa Antolino.
Banc One executives do not yet have estimates on potential profits, however.
Transamerica dealers across the United States are automatically eligible to take part in the program.
"One of the things we kept hearing from the dealers was that they wanted a retail program," said Mr. McArdle. "But that wasn't our expertise. So we found a partner."
And the partnership, according to Transamerica, seems to be a very good fit. Mr. McArdle said Transamerica executives discussed a collaboration with a number of banks and finance companies, but found that Banc One made the most sense.
"We appear to be in the same ballpark on the customer service aspects and the stability," said Mr. McArdle. "And a lot of our decision was based on getting a feel for how committed a partner would be. We didn't want someone who was going to walk away from this."
Transamerica Commercial Finance Corp., a subsidiary of San Francisco- based Transamerica Corp., has assets of $45 billion.