Jan. 19, 2009 – Finance Digest

Yamaha, HSBC renew revolving financing contract
Yamaha Motor Corp., U.S.A., and HSBC Finance Corporation’s card and retail services business announced a new seven-year agreement that extends through 2015.
HSBC will continue to provide revolving financing through the Yamaha Card program for customers who purchase Yamaha motorcycles, scooters, ATVs, side-by-sides, snowmobiles, PWC, accessories and apparel.
“HSBC has provided revolving financing for Yamaha’s customers since 1994 and, thanks to the concerted efforts of our Retail Finance team, we can look forward to continuing this mutually beneficial relationship through 2015,” said Ian Harper, general manager of Yamaha’s Financial Services Division.
“We are pleased to continue our successful 14-year partnership with Yamaha,” said Patrick Burke, senior executive vice president and chief operating officer, card and retail services for HSBC. “Our goal has always been to leverage our expertise in powersports financing so that we can provide Yamaha with financing solutions that help attract new customers and enhance relationships with current ones.”

New deal could broaden sparta’s dealer network
Sparta Commercial Services’ wholly owned subsidiary, Sparta Funding LLC, has entered into a new one-year, $25 million extendable revolving credit agreement.
The agreement is with Autobahn Funding Company LLC as lender, and DZ Bank AG Deutsche Zentral-Genossenchafts bank New York Branch as administrative agent and liquidity agent. The new credit facility is for the purchase of retail sales and lease contracts secured by new and used powersports vehicles, including motorcycles, select scooters and ATVs, and a portion of this facility also can be used to finance municipal and commercial fleet leases. DZ Bank, based in Frankfurt, is the fifth largest bank in Germany, and is the central bank for approximately 1,000 cooperative banks and maintains a presence in key financial centers throughout the world.
Sparta Commercial Services is a New York-based, nationwide financial services company dedicated to the powersports industry, offering financing and leasing products to consumers and retail powersports dealers, as well as a variety of commercial products for governmental agencies that require motorcycles and other equipment for law enforcement activities. Sparta’s consumer financing and leasing products are offered through a network of more than 2,100 dealers throughout the United States.
Commenting on the new relationship, Anthony Havens, Sparta’s CEO, said, “We are extremely pleased that in the current credit market, DZ Bank decided that our business model, with the performance and management of our portfolio, was worthy of their support and involvement.”
Havens says the new revolving credit facility, which requires Sparta to meet certain financial covenants prior to initial drawdown, might be increased subject to portfolio performance. Havens also says it will enable Sparta to expand its dealer network, increase the variety of eligible asset classes in the powersports market and enlarge its market share in the sector.
“The new credit facility with DZ Bank shows that even at a time when other lenders are scaling back, a financial services company like Sparta, with a highly focused and effective business model, can generate the kind of institutional confidence and support that this transaction demonstrates,” Havens said.

ADP unveils payroll solution system
ADP Lightspeed has announced the development of a new online payroll product, Payroll Plus. With this new system, ADP is customizing the features offered in other ADP products for the powersports industry, according to a company press release.
Payroll Plus automates new hire reporting, tax filing and tax payment and provides reports to verify the accuracy of payroll. All transactions integrate with the accounting general ledger module in LightspeedNXT. Reports also can be downloaded to Excel.
“This new offering provides significant time and money savings for dealers. Just one of the features we offer is managing tax tables,” Laurn Rice, general manager of ADP Lightspeed, said in the release.
Rice adds that Payroll Plus is Web-based and password protected. The service allows employers to perform payroll activities from any computer with an Internet connection, as well as view pay histories or print pay vouchers. The product offers increased capabilities for employees and employers.

Piaggio Group Obtains 150 million euro loan
Piaggio & C. S.p.A. recently agreed to a euro 150 million loan agreement with the European Investment Bank in Rome.
The funding for Piaggio was provided in connection with the Piaggio Group R&D investment plan for 2009-2012.
Piaggio Group Chief Operating Officer Michele Pallottini said: “In addition to enabling Piaggio to expand its R&D investments for development of innovative environment-friendly vehicles offering enhanced safety features and lower fuel consumption, the EIB loan will also strengthen our group’s financial position, at terms and conditions that are extremely competitive in today’s market.”

LoJack Corp. names new Chief Executive Officer
LoJack Corp. promoted Ronald Waters, III, from president and chief operating officer to president and CEO effective Jan. 1, succeeding Richard Riley in the role of CEO.
Riley will remain on a full-time basis as executive chairman of the board.
In announcing the appointment, Riley says he would work closely with Waters to develop and execute the long-term strategic plan and continue efforts to diversify the business.

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