Ensuring clear vision on the road to success
With a focus on developing key relationships with customers and suppliers, the team at Infinity Motorcycles have built a thriving business. Confident that she could make an impact on their bottom line, ERA UK Business Development Manager, Catherine Anderson, reached out to Financial Director, David Watkins.
Having recently renegotiated his own Merchant Card contract, David was keen to see what improvements, if any, ERA UK could deliver. Within a matter of months, impressive savings and greatly improved visibility cemented David’s confidence in his new partners. Together, the team are now working on longer-term projects which will continue to drive up revenue and increase profitability.
Infinity Motorcycles was established in 1999 by two veterans of the UK motorcycle trade. From its humble beginnings in a former bank on the North Circular in London, the now £13m turnover business has 14 branches UK wide as well as a thriving online department. With an emphasis on training and development, the company employs around 100 people and prides itself on its excellent retention rates.
Having reviewed Infinity Motorcycles’ needs, Catherine introduced David to Paul Davidson, one of ERA UK’s Banking and Payments specialists. As one of the company’s biggest indirect cost centres, David was keen to ensure that the all-important supplier relationship was protected where possible. The emphasis, as with all things at Infinity Motorcycles, being based on excellent on service and great relationships.
Paul has 25 years’ retail banking experience, and has specialised in payments and banking for ERA clients since 2005. He quickly reviewed the existing arrangements as well as analysing 12 months of transactional data in order to provide David with a comprehensive report based on the historical data. Paul identified that, although the newly arranged contract appeared cheaper, the discount had in fact been offset by cost increases elsewhere through a complicated fee structure. Thanks to his market knowledge and decades of experience, Paul was able to negotiate a restructured pricing model with the existing supplier, delivering a 35% saving and much improved visibility on spend. The new charging system was implemented the next month, much to David’s delight. Paul also worked with the supplier and their terminal provider to resolve a systems error which was costing Infinity Motorcycles more than £5,000 a year.
“Up to the point at which I met ERA UK, I’d been doing my own procurement. I was open minded but mildly sceptical about the whole thing. I was staggered by the level of detail and the visibility that ERA could bring on each cost and what we were actually paying. This allows us to make savings ongoing just by changing internal processes and it means we can plan ahead of changes in the market. ERA UK also worked to fix a longstanding problem with our PDQ terminals. Information wasn’t flowing as it should and so Paul intervened, liaised with the terminal provider to find a solution.” David Watkins, Financial Director at Infinity Motorcycles.
Having focussed on in-store functions, Paul turned his attention to the business’ growing ecommerce activity. Leveraging his industry experience, Paul chaired a meeting enabling a leading gateway provider to explore with David and Alan Arnold, Infinity Motorcycles’ Online Director, how to more closely align the payment solution and processes with their aggressive online growth strategy.
“The introduction to Realex was a big value-add for us and further highlighted the value and strength of our relationship with ERA UK. We’ve come away with some serious strategic advances which could see us take significant steps towards increased market share,” said David.
With a successful first project completed, Catherine has identified additional cost centres in which she feels she and other specialists can deliver savings, streamline processes and improved visibility on spend. David, once sceptical, is now a firm advocate of the partnership for the long term.
SUMMARY OF SAVINGS
- Merchant Card Fees: 35%
Greatly improved visibility on spend
Improved process efficiencies
Independent and objective market reviews
Access to cost centre specialist
“I’m delighted with the attention to detail, the depth to which ERA UK have gone and the knowledge sharing that has empowered me for the future. One of the things I value the most about working with ERA UK is that I can pick up the phone and get independent advice from a highly expert point of view. Together, we’re future-proofing the business as far as we can.”