ALAMO, Calif. & LOS ANGELES - A new partnership between Global Debt Network Automotive and CU Lending Solutions LLC will allow credit unions to expand their auto loan business into non-prime segments and buy seasoned auto loan portfolios.

More than 40 million used cars are sold in the U.S. each year, with some 8 million of them to low- and moderate-income car-buyers, according to the Consumer Task Force for Automotive Issues. That number is expected to increase dramatically as a struggling economy and higher gas prices drive car-buyers to purchase less expensive, more fuel-efficient used cars.

As the new-car lending market declines, credit unions increasingly are seeking ways to serve this fast-growing segment of car-buyers. A recent study by the National Credit Union Foundation affirms that, "Non-prime auto lending represents a substantial nearby opportunity for not-for-profit credit unions to expand their markets, build net income, and attract new loyal members by giving them a substantially better deal."

"As more Americans seek out used vehicles, dealerships need new financing partners to help them serve a much larger universe of customers and offer a far more diverse set of loan products than they have in the past," said Mike Sheridan, founder and president of GDNAuto, the first nationwide online loan portfolio transaction platform. "At the same time, credit unions and finance companies are discovering there are ways they can serve this population and do so quite efficiently and profitably by selling their seasoned loans or balancing their risk by purchasing loans from other geographies."

CU Lending Solutions works with credit unions and finance companies to custom-develop, build and operate auto lending businesses that deliver sustained value.

"Increasingly, credit unions are more comfortable reaching out to serve this population of borrowers because they have access to an array of tools, services and resources that help them connect with new dealerships and better manage the financial and operational risk associated with indirect, non-prime loan portfolios," said Frank Mercer, president and CEO of CU Lending Solutions LLC. "This partnership extends the market reach of both companies and provides auto dealers and lenders with an efficient way to originate more loans and convert the seasoned loans they have originated into cash to fund their operations."