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Ford Motor Company, GE Card Services to Launch National Quality Care Credit Card.

Business Editors

STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 3, 2002

Ford Motor Company and GE Card Services have teamed to launch a new national private label credit card program offering instant credit and same-as-cash financing with no payments for 90 days to qualified Ford, Lincoln and Mercury customers.

The new program, called the Quality Care Auto Service Card, will be used to complement Ford Motor Company's continuing commitment to aftermarket service.

"Our association with GE, the nation's leading private label credit provider, is a natural alliance that will help our dealers grow their parts, service and accessory sales and increase service to their customers," said Jamy Cureton, director, North American Business Development, Ford Customer Service Division. "The Quality Care Auto Service Card program provides our dealers with another powerful customer benefit and sales tool that will help them attract new customers and increase sales and loyalty among their existing customer base."

The nationwide rollout to all Ford, Lincoln and Mercury dealers follows a successful test of the program in Texas and Oklahoma. More than 220 dealers enrolled and participated in the test. The program will be rolled out nationwide over three months, beginning June 1, 2002.

The 90-days same-as-cash feature is a particularly strong selling point enabling customers to make needed repairs without tying up their credit line on their MasterCard, Visa or other major credit card. The card will also be offered to new car and truck customers to help them customize their new purchase with add-on accessories and provide Ford quality service for all their vehicles.

Key benefits of the program for Ford's dealers include the ability to offer on-the-spot financing to qualified customers, promotional financing terms up to 12 months, low merchant discount rates, payment for credit card sales within two business days and electronic processing of transactions. The card can be used for service, parts and a wide range of other items sold by participating dealers. The dealer's name is also embossed on the card to enhance customer loyalty.

"We are very pleased with the opportunity to work with Ford Motor Company to deliver the Quality Care Auto Service Card program to its dealers," said Glenn Marino, senior vice president, GE Card Services.

Marino explained that Card Services' 16 years of experience in the automotive aftermarket industry has shown that consumers often need convenient financing to pay for unexpected major repairs. Others appreciate the opportunity to take advantage of the 90-days same-as-cash feature.

"The Quality Care Auto Service Card program also provides Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealers another valuable customer service tool to help build customer loyalty and repeat purchases," Marino said.

Ford field sales representatives played an integral part in the success of the test in Texas and Oklahoma, according to Marino.

"Their efforts and input and the suggestions made by participating dealers enabled us to make adjustments and improvements in the program that will be of significant benefit as we roll out the program nationwide," he said.

GE Card Services, based in Stamford, Conn., provides private label credit card, corporate purchasing card and corporate expense management services for a diverse portfolio of retailers, multinational companies and universities, with a total of nearly 100 million cardholders in North America. GE Card Services is a GE Capital Services company. More information about GE Card Services can be found online at www.ge.com/capital/cardservices/.

GE Capital, with assets of US$425 billion, is a global, diversified financial services company grouped into six key operating segments comprised of 25 businesses. A wholly-owned subsidiary of General Electric Company, GE Capital, based in Stamford, Conn., provides a variety of consumer services, such as private label credit cards; life and auto insurance; mid-market financing; specialized financing; specialty insurance; equipment management; and specialized services, to businesses and individuals in 45 countries around the world. GE (NYSE: GE) is a diversified services, technology and manufacturing company with operations worldwide. More information about GE can be found online at www.ge.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jun 3, 2002
Words:659
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