Tom O’Neill is the incoming president of the National Association of Fleet Resale Dealers (NAFRD). Dealers who are members of the organization are specialists in aiding fleets and leasing companies in the remarketing of their vehicles.
Vehicle Remarketing caught up with O’Neill on the next to last business day of 2002, in his office at Valley Motors in Stockton, CA. We asked him to give VR a brief rundown on his vision of where the association is headed in the coming year.
“My number one vision,” O’Neill began, “is to see that all the members are clear with regard to the position of NAFRD in the industry, and how that relates to Internet marketing.
“I see NAFRD as an organization that is composed of the best of the best with regard to remarketing of fleet and lease vehicles,” he continued. “Our ability to do so in a variety of ways far exceeds anyone else in the industry. This includes personal attention to individual clients, and also the ability to work through the Internet.”
He explained that the Internet is a growing part of NAFRD’s operation.
VR asked O’Neill if he eventually sees most of this business being done over the Internet.
“There is so much fuzziness out there in regard to that,” he said, noting that it is hard to pinpoint exactly how much. “The Internet is here to stay. It is something we are all going to have to deal with and work with. NAFRD is on board trying to be a leader in that respect.”
He said that most of the members of the association are very much aware of the efforts that are taking place with regard to NAFRD and the Internet.
“We are working in an educational mode,” he noted.
In conclusion, O’Neill said, “We as an organization have been pushing the technology theme for a number of years now. People who years ago had this vision for NAFRD are seeing that it is coming true, and it is incumbent upon all the members to jump on board, because it is not going away.”
NAFRD and OnLane Inc. Provide Internet
NAFRD became a major player in the Internet remarketing field in August 2001 when CitiCapital Fleet required all vehicles be sold in a competitive bid environment. This meant a large portion of business for NAFRD members would be lost if they couldn’t accommodate this request.
Moving quickly, NAFRD formed a relationship with OnLane Inc. to provide an Internet auction platform for the consignment of CitiCapital Fleet vehicles with a bidding system in place for all NAFRD members.
This program proved very successful in the first year.
Since that time, many of the major fleet companies have participated in this auction platform and have found it to be very effective. In addition to NAFRD members’ traditional remarketing methods, NAFRD plans to continue to offer this Internet bidding system to meet the needs of its clients and to increase its presence within the auction/remarketing industry.