The COVID-19 economic crisis has realigned lenders’ focus on technology initiatives as team members are expected to remain remote well into 2021. Technology improvements are expected to continue to be a front-and-center priority for many lenders in the new year.
Here are the five most popular technology and innovations stories of the year.
Autonomous vehicle initiatives have taken a backseat in the last year, evidenced by the two German automakers pausing their joint AV initiative in June. Expenses, combined with economic conditions at the time, contributed to the decision.
Ford Credit, in conjunction with the release of its new all-electric Mustang Mach-E, released a new financing product that is a hybrid between a lease and a retail installment contract. Consumers can enter into 36- or 48-month contracts, with three options at the end of term: return the vehicle as if it were a lease, trade it in or finance the final balloon payment.
Vroom has seen quite a bit of success this year — from its IPO to record increases in sales last quarter. And while the online retailer began laying the groundwork for the year’s successes long ago, the company first made headlines this year with the launch of Vroom Financial Services powered by Chase, and an increase in its floorplan line of credit with Ally Financial.
While e-contracting and e-signatures have been an industry staple for a while, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the need for mass adoption in the industry. VW Credit was just one of many lenders who prioritized e-sign capabilities to meet the need of consumer buying habits as dealerships shuttered their doors or limited their capacity.
AI-powered Remitter won the award for Best in Show at the 2020 DEMOvation Challenge at the Auto Finance Innovation Summit in San Diego. Remitter is a text and email solution that allows for payments at any time in the loan life cycle. Receivable management workflow has become especially important in the current environment as extensions increase and lenders work to service accounts.