Ally Financial is a storied company in the U.S., dating back to its founding in 1919 as General Motors Acceptance Corporation (GMAC), to its reformation in 2006 when General Motors sold a majority interest to private equity firm Cerberus. The Ally Financial brand came in 2010, replacing the time-honored GMAC brand.
The big news today, as Banking Dive reports, is that Ally Financial shuttered their credit card business, a partnership with TD Bank, because it was stagnating.
- Ally’s credit card partnership with TD Bank wasn’t meeting expectations with a loan portfolio of less than $100 million.
- Ally Financial is… paying $190 million to buy Health Credit Services, a Charlotte, North Carolina-based firm that offers unsecured loans to finance medical procedures. Ally CEO Jeffrey Brown says he wants to apply HCS’ point-of-sale lending capabilities to other retail sectors.
- The company intends to originate point-of-sale loans for Health Credit Services and hold them on its own balance sheet. Two banks and a credit union now originate loans for HCS.
- (CEO Jennifer) LaClair pointed to rapid growth in point of sale lending to explain Ally’s entering the space. “It is growing at 18-20-plus percent.” she said during the company’s earnings call on Thursday.
The TD credit card deal from which Ally exists looks somewhat shortsighted. The article points out that TD Bank took on the credit loss risk, which left Ally with little more of a share for the credit card originations. Many large co-brands today share the risk for a potential increase in revenue for the upside of the relationship.
Synchrony is a top player in the medical finance business so it will be interesting to see if Ally Financial will get traction, after a weak showing in credit cards.
Or, maybe another Ally Oop.
Overview by Brian Riley, Director, Credit Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group