Dealerscope Warranty Roundup: 2017 Goals & Strategies

Sean Stapleton, president & CEO of Warrantech, recently spoke with Dealerscope magazine as part of a discussion on upcoming company initiatives. The following is an excerpt, providing a brief glimpse of what Warrantech has in store for 2017 to help businesses increase their extended service plan offerings and give customers the most value for their money and a worry-free shopping experience. 
Warrantech has developed a revolutionary new customer loyalty program for its partners that is designed to generate both recurring protection plan revenue and long-term customer retention.
The program allows retail partners to offer their customer base customized protection bundles for major appliances, mobile devices and connected living products owned by the customer, regardless of where the product was purchased. Partners have the ability to offer their customers monthly product protection subscriptions designed to enhance the customer’s experience with a full menu of features including 24/7 tech support and seamless repair/replacement solutions.
The program can be customized to provide disappearing deductibles for services or products provided to customers under the plans procured through the participating partners, thereby incentivizing customers to remain loyal to the partner retailer. Moreover, the rich data from the program can be monetized to help deliver targeted and personalized product offerings to customers based on their recent program usage.
Look for the full article in the March 2017 issue of Dealerscope or online at http://bit.ly/2mKB0iJ   
And be sure to keep up with us on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn so you can learn more about our innovative products and services as they become available.
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Warrantech Partners with Encompass for Sourcing and Procurement of Parts and Product replacements

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga., Jan. 04, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Inc. (“Encompass” or “the Company”) a leading provider of 3PL and 4PL solutions for a diverse range of replacement parts and finished goods, today announced it has been selected by Warrantech, an AmTrust Financial Services Company and one of the country’s largest extended warranty administrators, to help provide parts and product procurement in support of Warrantech’s extended warranty service objectives.
Encompass will provide repair parts to the Warrantech service network, or replacement products in the event parts are not readily available or repairs are not economically feasible. The Company’s highly-seasoned Purchasing team will leverage its global network of vendors to support multiple product categories, including Consumer Electronics, Home Appliance, Heating and Cooling, Computer, Imaging, Mobile Devices and others.
Encompass Purchasing will be focused on creating a world-class service experience for Warrantech’s customers and the brands it supports, while helping to manage costs, decrease turn time and positively impact severity.
Encompass expects to reduce expensive buyouts to consumers. As Encompass President and CEO Robert Coolidge noted in a recent blog post, the use of gift cards or other means for warranty reimbursement to consumers versus repair or replacement is costly to warranty companies and raises the risk of brand displacement for manufacturers.
“In our ongoing mission to help our clients be more successful, we aim to curtail the industry practice of compensating consumers with gift cards to replace a defective product,” said Coolidge. “This can lead to brand displacement and decreased customer satisfaction as end users are now being tasked to find another product. Manufacturers should want to do whatever it takes to keep their brand in the customer’s home and maintain low repair costs.”
To provide hands-on service to Warrantech, Encompass will embed a dedicated team of Encompass employees within the Warrantech infrastructure, as well as inside key partner facilities – a practice that Encompass has deployed with other strategic partners with great success.
“Working side-by-side with Warrantech on site will enable Encompass to more efficiently resolve issues and eliminate communication gaps to help expedite customer claims resolution,” said Ariel Gorelik, Chief Operating Officer, Warrantech.
About Warrantech
Warrantech is a subsidiary of AmTrust Financial Services, a multinational property and casualty holding company that is rated “A” (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company for their financial strength and stability. An innovative, technology-driven company, AmTrust brings its financial strength to Warrantech, enabling it to offer a unique, bundled approach that includes both underwriting and administration. This creates transparency and visibility to information that enables customers to change and create plans that are both highly customized and profitable.
About Encompass Supply Chain Solutions, Inc. 
Encompass is a market leader in forward and reverse supply chain management and high-tech repair services for a diverse and expanding range of consumer electronics, computer, major appliances and imaging products.  Encompass provides end-to-end solutions for OEMs, retailers, independent dealers and third-party administrators.
Encompass manages all stages of the product lifecycle, including finished goods and replacement parts logistics, board repair and product refurbishment services, returns management, asset value recovery and eco-friendly disposal. For more information, please visit encompass.com and encompassparts.com and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

Extended-Service Contracts Help Build a Comfort Zone – and Long-Term Relationships – with Customers

The following is an excerpt from an article by Jeff Crider, which appeared in the 2017 Jan./Feb. issue of RVBusiness. The full article can be found at: http://bit.ly/2m9hhac
“The quality of RVs in general has improved, but there are more and more gadgets,” said Joe Suttera, Warrantech’s vice president of specialty products. “From a warranty standpoint, there is certainly a lot more risk than there ever has been when it comes to these units.”
The continued growth of the RV industry in 2017 is good news not only for the nation’s RV manufacturers, aftermarket suppliers and retail dealers, but also for the companies selling extended-service contracts to this emerging wave of RV consumers.
   In fact, the extended-service-contract business is booming, companies told RVBusiness, due to this sustained increase in the sales of new and used towable and motorized RVs.
   Indeed, the industry is currently experiencing its eighth consecutive year of growth, with wholesale shipments of new RVs expected to increase 4.4% in 2017 to 438,000 units, according to projections by Richard Curtin of the University of Michigan’s Consumer Survey Research Center.
   That continuous flow of new- and used-vehicle sales creates huge opportunities for dealers to sell their customers extended-service contracts, the cost of which is typically added to the vehicle loan at the time of purchase.
   Regardless of whether their RV is new or used, consumers want to have peace of mind knowing that unexpected repair costs will be covered when their vehicle’s warranty runs out. While manufacturers provide different types of warranties to cover things that can malfunction in the mechanical and living areas of an RV, warranties only last for specific periods of time. Extended-service contracts have been designed to extend warranty protections for additional periods of time with varying levels of coverage and cost.
   Extended-service contracts are also available to cover things that are not typically covered by factory warranties such as roadside assistance, tire-and-wheel coverage and paint-and-fabric coverage.
   Millennials, in particular, are in tune with the latest innovations in technology and they want it to work.
   Extended-service contracts can cover these items after the warranties expire to give consumers peace of mind with their RV purchases, regardless of whether they have new or used vehicles.
   Bill Gilman, senior vice president of sales for Warrantech, an AmTrust Financial Company based in Bedford, Texas, said there were more “fit and fitness issues” with RVs back in 2007 when the RV industry was struggling through the Great Recession. The downturn forced many RV manufacturers out of business. But while the quality of today’s RVs has significantly improved from 2007, Warrantech and other extended-service contract providers see plenty of potential risks to cover.
   “The quality of RVs in general has improved, but there are more and more gadgets,” said Joe Suttera, Warrantech’s vice president of specialty products. “Now you’re covering 50-inch flat-screen TVs, full walk-in showers. From a warranty standpoint, there is certainly a lot more risk than there ever has been when it comes to these units.”
   As one might expect, companies that provide extended-service contracts closely monitor their claims reports so that they can price their contracts accordingly. They also monitor feedback from RV dealers and periodically either update their extended-service contracts to cover new products or develop entirely new types of extended-service contracts for dealers to sell.
   Extended-service contract companies offer a variety of educational programs and increasingly sophisticated electronic programs to expedite contract sales and claims processing.
   But the time to make the initial pitch to consumers is in the F&I process when they’re purchasing their new or used RVs. That’s when dealers have an opportunity to educate their customers so that they know the differences between warranties and extended-service contracts.
Warrantech Automotive, an AmTrust Group Co.
Bedford, Texas
Product offering: Warrantech markets exclusionary and stated extended-service contracts using the CampersEdge brand name. The company covers motorhomes valued at up to $5000,000 and with up to 100,000 miles. It also covers towable units valued at up to $150,000 and that are up to 15 years old. The company also offers specialty contracts for RV technical assistance; 24/7 roadside assistance; windshield repairs; painting and interior; tire and wheel coverage; as well as key/remote replacement coverage. Warrantech also provides Towbusters coverage with 24-hour emergency towing, roadside assistance, lost key and lockout service, map routing assistance and theft as well as hit-and-run protection. The company also offers guaranteed asset protection (GAP) coverage.