NextGear Capital will be thanking dealers across the country for their partnership throughout the month of June by forgiving 20 loans and surprising four clients with customized golf carts.

These efforts are aimed at recognizing the company’s independent-dealer client base for their continued partnership and contributions to the industry.

Accompanying the month-long celebration by NextGear Capital will be a social media campaign focused on reinforcing the thank you messaging through shared reactions of those selected for loan forgiveness and golf carts.

NextGear Capital Thank You Month was established in June 2018 when the company dedicated a month to thanking their independent dealer clients. Transitioning from prizes such as Apple TVs, Xbox gaming consoles and Amazon Fire Sticks, NextGear Capital will be focused solely on loan forgiveness in 2019.

 

After spending the last few years focusing on internal improvement, America’s Car-Mart is now turning outward to its customers and the communities it serves.

The buy-here, pay-here chain recently unveiled a new mission statement: “To be America’s best auto sales and finance company in the eyes of our associates and customers while improving the communities we serve.”

The number of communities Car-Mart serves continues to grow.

In March, America’s Car-Mart re-opened a dealership located in Tyler, Texas.

This brought its dealership count to 144. Car-Mart plans to open two more dealerships in Arkansas in the next few months – one in Conway and one in Bryant.

Unfortunately, one market the company won’t enter soon is Chattanooga, Tenn. Car-Mart CEO Jeff Williams said a planned project there “has run into some challenges” and its unknown when, or if, it will move forward.

Plans for other new stores remain on track and should open in the next few months.

The bigger focus, however, is growing the accounts at its current stores.

Car-Mart had an active accounts base of approximately 75,600 as of April 30, an increase of approximately 4,500 from April 30, 2018.

“We’ll grow at a pace that allows us to serve our customers and communities at the highest level,” Williams said.

The company recently hired its first director of customer experience.

Car-Mart rolled out an online credit application this spring and is working on digital photos of all its inventory.

“Our customers really rely on us keeping them on the road,” Williams said. “We’re a key component of the quality of their lives.”

New-vehicle retail sales are expected to fall in May from a year ago, according to a forecast developed jointly by J.D. Power and LMC Automotive.

Retail sales are projected to reach 1,226,800 units, a 3.1 percent decrease compared with May 2018. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for retail sales is expected to be 13.5 million units, down nearly 200,000 from a year ago.

Sales have declined every month this year, with calendar year-to-date sales through May expected to be down 5.2 percent compared with the same period in 2018.
Total sales in May are projected to reach 1,558,800 units, a 2.1 percent decrease compared with May 2018. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for total sales is expected to be 17 million units, down 200,000 from a year ago.

The number of new vehicles sitting on dealer lots is rising. On average, new vehicles sold in May spent 74 days on dealer lots, the highest level for the month of May since 2009.

Twenty-nine percent of vehicles sold so far in May have sat on lots for 90 days or longer, up from just over a quarter of vehicles last year.

Incentive spending per unit so far in May is $3,722, up $25 from last year. Spending as a percentage of MSRP remains below the 10 percent threshold at 9.1 percent.

Transaction prices are continuing to rise. New-vehicle prices in May are on pace to reach $33,457—the highest ever for the month—and are up more than 4 percent ($1,345) from last year. The record prices reflect higher prices for both cars (up 3 percent to $27,259) and trucks/SUVs (up 4 percent to $36,388).

The growth in average prices is due primarily to sales weakness at lower price points. Retail sales of vehicles under $30,000 are expected to be down 5.7 percent in May, compared with 2.1 percent for the market overall.

Carvana Co. has priced the private placement of an additional $250 million aggregate principal amount of its 8.875 percent senior notes due 2023.


The new notes priced at 100.500 percent of their principal amount, plus accrued and unpaid interest from April 1, 2019, representing a yield to call of 8.693 percent. The new notes will be issued as additional notes under the contract governing the outstanding $350 million of senior notes that were issued on Sept. 21, 2018.


Carvana anticipates that the closing of the offering of the new notes will take place on or about May 24, subject to customary closing conditions.


Carvana also announced the upsize and pricing of its concurrent underwritten public offering of 4.2 million shares of its Class A common stock at a public offering price of $65 per share. Carvana granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 630,000 shares of its Class A common stock.


The public offering was upsized from the previously announced offering size of 3.5 million shares of Class A common stock.


Carvana intends to use the net proceeds from the new notes offering and the public offering for general corporate purposes. Carvana may use the net proceeds from these offerings to partially repay borrowings under its floor plan facility until it identifies other specific uses.

The Pennsylvania attorney general announced a $50,892.29 settlement that allows restitution for consumer victims of a Mechanicsburg used-car dealership.


The suit named New Kingstown Auto LLC, owner Harry D. Laughman, and an employee, Dana L. (Blosser) San.


The settlement, in the form of a petition requiring court approval, comes as a result of a lawsuit filed by the attorney general’s office alleging several violations.


According to the suit, the dealership advertised used motor vehicles for sale without disclosing the business name and address of the advertiser or the word “dealer” and sold vehicles without a valid dealer or salesperson license.


The dealership is also accused of clocking, failing to forward paperwork to the state Department of Transportation.

New Kingston also allegedly failed to disclose required information on leases and accepted installment payments from consumers on vehicles without holding the required installment seller license.

Page 1 of 8