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Bankruptcy Good for Auto Industry - TrueCar's Scott Painter

Scott Painter expressing his opinion during an interview that bankruptcy for both car companies and dealerships is good for the Auto Industry and what needs to happen - Scott Painter is CEO of both TrueCar and ZAG

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Comment by John Clark on December 27, 2011 at 3:21pm

@Ashley - I don't buy it that this organization was able to pull the wool over the eyes of all these dealerships. When we had people come into the dealers that I worked for asking for access to the DMS, the first question that I had was, "What information are you looking for and what are you going to be using it for?"

I can't believe this question was not asked of this company.

If deceit was involved, the the contracts should be void and the connections to the DMS closed immediately.

Comment by Ashley Corning on December 27, 2011 at 3:13pm

by somehow convinced you mean, didn't tell us the intended use, then yes John, they are exactly the same (only with a billion dollar budget)

Comment by John Clark on December 27, 2011 at 3:09pm

I am trying to understand the relevance of this TrueCar/ZAG thing. As far as I can see, the big difference I see between them and let's say Edmunds, who has been doing it for at least 15 to 20 years is that TrueCar has some how convinced the dealers to allow them to have access to their DMS system, which allows them to reveal real transactional information.

#1 - If the dealers allow them to have access, they deserve everything they get.

#2 - As far as the bankruptcy subject goes, I didn't agree with the automotive bailouts and if for some reason a dealer finds themselves in a cash flow position that makes their business go into bankruptcy, this is what America is all about. There is no guarantee of success, just the opportunity to pursue it. Businesses fail everyday and the automotive business should be no exception.

Just my two cents.

Here's to Your LifetoSuccess,

John Clark

Comment by Ashley Corning on December 27, 2011 at 3:01pm

Transparency yes, very much needed, but where can i look up the cost to Best Buy of my new T.V.?  Does Kemore have a site that shows just exactly how much it costs to make my new front loader? Then, can they tell me I can buy it for less then that?  This is the problem I see, not transparency

Comment by Keith Shetterly on December 27, 2011 at 2:58pm

Wow.  Tim, I think you missed the point.  It's not a new way of doing business.  It's a person selling transparency to the consumer and hiding his fees to the dealer; it's a company pushing change in a particular way for their profits and advocating dealers closing at the same time; it's not incremental sales, it's a shyster taking dealer profits.  "Obfuscation of price" is not the problem and never was; negotiation is like that.  There's no "obfuscation" with Mr. Painter:  The clarity he has about a destructive change to this business rather than profitable change that includes dealers is unconscionable. wouldn't work for him, though what if we knew his expenses and could work a price with his investment group for his services or someone else could fill in?

Cars aren't commodities.  No way, no how.  And this isn't about standing AGAINST change.

As to Digital Dealer, in Scott's future one national dealer group will be attending and going to one booth:  TrueCar's.


Comment by Tim Rulapaugh on December 27, 2011 at 2:51pm

The first Digital Dealer Conference I went to was in Nashville, 2009.  One of the main themes I kept hearing over and over was about how we're moving into a new age that requires a new way of doing business and how many people will be reluctant to adapt to this new way of doing business in light of how they'd stayed in business and succeeded for so many years doing things the "old way."

Now I'm hearing some of those same speakers on here being aggressively against a new way of doing business.

The fact of the matter is that the internet now provides a new layer of transparency to everything.  How many of you now shop around for the lowest price on a product before making a purchase?  How many of you have done a background search on someone?  Or looked up the value of a piece of property?  Don't all of those demand a new level of transparency?

There hasn't been...and still isn't...a lot of transparency when a car salesman is talking to a customer.  If there was, every customer would know about holdbacks and not a single dealer would claim that the customer is paying dealer cost on a new vehicle.

Now someone is coming along and daring to pull back the curtain to reveal the truth.

Whether you agree or disagree with how it's being done, the fact of the matter is it is being done.  Even if Painter and TrueCar get shut down and deemed illegal in every state, the fact remains that he's pulled back the curtain and opened a lot of eyes and created at least a new, different aspect of selling and sales.  If TrueCar does get shut down, someone else will come along with a similar concept that will fit in the constraints of laws (or interpretation of laws).  It will be very interesting to see who just talks the talk about adapting to the new ways of doing business and who steps up and walks the walk...

Comment by Ashley Corning on December 27, 2011 at 2:39pm

I agree, say no, it doesn't hurt!

Comment by Keith Shetterly on December 27, 2011 at 2:20pm

Anyway, let's all focus on Scott Painter now:  Clearly, he's arrogant to EVERYbody!  :)

Comment by Keith Shetterly on December 27, 2011 at 2:19pm

@ Cathy:  I actually think there IS an important gender difference in car sales, in that I have observed that women typically make better salespeople for cars.  It's just so very hard for them to get past so much macho-bias against them from their peers and management to begin with; GOBN crap, to me.  I know that I personally try very hard NOT to be a neanderthal myself!  :)  Hope you like the blog.

Comment by Cathy Nesbit on December 27, 2011 at 2:15pm

@Keith to your statement "I just wanted to note his important acknowledgement and apology, which wasn't noted in your response--so I didn't know if you saw it.  So I myself spoke up for that, because I felt that was just as important as his mistake."

I agree.Good Point.  

Also, I'll check out that blog. thanks:) 

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