BOSTON — Subprime motorcycle financing is a risky business that most lenders shy away from, but Ride Today Acceptance utilizes its years of dealer experience and industry expertise to find success and help capture the marketshare, Ben Donnarumma, the company’s partner and director of sales and marketing, told Powersports Finance in an exclusive interview at the lender’s Beverly, Mass.-based headquarters.
Donnarumma and his colleagues at Ride Today have operated motorcycle and auto dealerships since 1993, up until recent months when they shifted their focus solely on motorcycle financing, according to Donnarumma.
One of the biggest challenges with financing subprime consumers is the “naivete” of a dealership’s F&I and sales people, added Richard Snyder, director of underwriting at RTA. “Lack of training is definitely a big issue,” he said. “The more experienced the F&I department, the more success you have at the dealer. Dedicated F&I departments have better resources and have more experience,” and the dealerships without a dedicated department often need additional training.
“We know what it’s like to be in front of a customer, so we are really in tune with what the dealer has gone through or what the dealer goes through each day,” Donnarumma said. “We will help the dealer with training — whether it’s subprime training or sales training, we will help them from the beginning to the end.”
Ride Today Acceptance — a subsidiary of Encompass Consulting LLC — operates in 29 states. The startup began making loans for new and used on-road powersports vehicles in April 2015, and funds an average of $700,000 in loans each month, according to Jason Sheeley, the company’s national sales manager.
Ride Today’s Donnarumma will speak on the “Keys to Successful Subprime Lending” panel at the upcoming PowerSports Finance 2016 conference. During the Oct. 5 session, Donnarumma and his fellow panelists will discuss subprime risk, underwriting best practices, and how to avoid seasonal repossession challenges.