CULA launches 50,000 leases for $2 billion in 2021

Leasing matters to credit union members, and our record numbers for 2021 prove it

Credit Union Leasing of America (CULA) achieved $2 billion in lease originations in 2021, a record single year, the company announced today. This record is the result of the creation of 50,000 leases in 2021, also a first for the company.

In October, for the first time in CULA’s 34-year history, the leader in indirect vehicle leasing surpassed 100,000 active leases in its portfolio, which nearly tripled in five years to $3.8 billion. . CULA offers leasing through credit unions in 17 states, adding six more states in 2021 alone. More than 30 credit unions are currently active on CULA’s innovative leasing platform.

CULA’s record growth came in the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, in an increasingly challenging market in which inventory constraints drove record vehicle prices(1).

Leasing has proven to be a more affordable and flexible option for car buyers. This has been particularly beneficial for credit unions, which have increased their share of auto loans and leasing over the past year(2). In fact, leasing is a “critical” option according to Experian(3), which recently stated that “leasing will remain an important option for those looking to get a new vehicle with a lower monthly payment.”

“We have never seen an automotive market like this and, although 2022 promises to have its challenges, as we enter a new year after a banner year, we are optimistic about the future – thanks in in large part to our amazing credit unions and dealerships,” said Ken Sopp, President of CULA.

“With flexible lease terms and payments averaging $109 less than loan repayments(4), we look forward to supporting our credit union partners as they help even more members buy new vehicles in 2022. We also look forward to our continued work with our innovative car dealership partners as they have a measurable impact in extending the benefits of leasing to car buyers. automobile is the perfect auto loan product, for consumers, car dealerships and credit unions.”

Sopp noted that even in a contracting market, credit unions generated 20.2% of total auto loans and leases during the third quarter of 2021, which is higher than the pre-pandemic share of 19.6%. in the third quarter of 2019(5).

“Leasing is important to credit union members, and our record numbers for 2021 prove it,” Sopp continued.

Robert Cashman, CEO of Metro Credit Union, whose credit union began leasing on CULA’s platform in 2021, explained, “Leasing is quickly emerging as an important option for car buyers entering the market. a vehicle sales market with limited stocks and record prices. Cashman continues, “We wanted to be at the forefront of affordable and flexible vehicle financing options that leasing offers.”

CULA Vehicle Leasing has also proven to be a key tool for dealerships in 2021: CULA has seen exponential growth in dealership partnerships, growing the number of dealerships in its network more than tenfold over the past three years.

According to Cody Carter, internet sales manager at Tustin Toyota in Southern California, who works with CULA, “There are very few customers that a lease won’t work for. And as the market normalizes, having an alternative bank, like a credit union, means we can get payments that work for our customers and gives us an edge that no one else has.(6)”

CULA pioneered indirect vehicle leasing for credit unions with its high-value, analytics-driven leasing program, backed by exceptional customer service and proven systems, all with the goal of helping credit unions achieve their financial and membership goals.

About Credit Union Leasing of America

Credit Union Leasing of America (CULA) has been the leader in indirect vehicle leasing for credit unions for over 30 years. Founded in 1988, CULA provides premier program support, analytics reporting, compliance assistance, dealer management tools and member services. The CULA Indirect Vehicle Leasing Program enables credit union innovators to diversify their existing loan portfolios, improve performance and expand member services. Visit to learn more.

Media contacts:

Angela Jacobson, mWEBB Communications, angela(at)mwebbcom(dot)com, (714) 454-8776

Melanie Webber, mWEBB Communications, melanie(at)mwebbcom(dot)com, (949) 307-1723




4) Experian State of the automotive financing market: 3rd quarter 2021



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