In the 1990s, Triumph sought to expand its international dealer network to support its ambitious growth plans. One of Triumph’s top priorities was keeping this new dealer network stocked with sufficient product to meet growing customer demand. Stocking the full line of Triumph products could tie up a hefty $200,000 or more of crucial working capital for each dealer at any given time. The allocation of such a large sum of capital to inventory takes valuable cash flow away which can otherwise be invested pro-actively in running and growing the business.
Triumph decided managing the financial relationship with their dealer network was not an optimal use of their resources. The team wanted to focus on what they do best: the design and manufacture of class leading motorcycles.
By having a partner like GE Capital, we can focus on our core business, developing great motorcycles.
GE Capital's strategy
In 1994 Triumph turned to GE Capital Commercial Distribution Finance to help solve their challenge. GE Capital offered Triumph an innovative solution, which enabled Triumph’s European dealers to carry enough inventory to meet customer demand, and at the same time helping Triumph to generate the working capital it needed to power its growth.
With over 25 years of experience providing distribution finance for the motorcycle industry, GE Capital not only provided Triumph dealers with the financing they needed, but also a deep understanding of emerging industry trends. Steve Reynolds, a 13-year GE Capital veteran and a Motorsports industry Relationship Executive at GE Capital Europe, works closely with Triumph to understand their marketing and distribution strategies. He regularly meets with Triumph’s leadership team and coordinates GE Capital’s relationships with their subsidiaries across the globe.
Outside of Europe, local teams use their deep industry knowledge to support Triumph's global dealer networks. GE Capital Commercial Distribution Finance's Motorsports industry team in the U.S., including Paul Puma and Jeff Pike, work to support Triumph and its dealers across the U.S., where Triumph continues to gain market share.
GE Capital enabled Triumph dealers to stock inventory in a timely manner, while at the same time freeing up capital for them to run their businesses effectively—a strategy that has been a great success. By providing financing in key markets and allowing Triumph to focus on its core business, GE Capital has helped Triumph grow. Over the last 16 years, Triumph has increased production of motorbikes tenfold, expanded their sales reach from 3 countries to 35, and grown their network to over 700 dealers globally.
GE Capital and Triumph are continuing their partnership into 2010, as GE Capital is set to become Triumph’s exclusive provider of dealer finance in Sweden, Finland, Norway, and Denmark.