GULFPORT, Miss.--()--Louis J. (Louie) Normand, Jr, CEO of American Truck Group, LLC* of Gulfport, Mississippi, is serious about getting his messages out.
“if you could fog up a glass they would approve you”
Normand’s company has an extremely large 80’ x 20’ electronic billboard sign on I-10. It is a state of the art $500,000 investment that Normand has made. The quality is very high and can show crisp video with vivid colors. This opens up a world of possibilities on what to show. While it could show the Super Bowl or a major movie thriller, the billboard normally shows passing motorists a variety of trucks that American Truck Group sells.
For the month or so before the presidential election, Normand has elected to show his support for the Republican ticket and has included bright billboards with clear billboard messages including one that says “$16 Trillion In Debt NOBAMA 2012” and another one that shows a picture of President Ronald Reagan with “Remember Real Hope and Change?”.
Normand has built a large highly successful truck dealership over the past decade while overcoming serious obstacles. Initially having started a traditional truck dealership that sold trucks and offered third party financing, Normand was extremely successful. However, in March 2000 with the stock market crashing and a subsequent extreme tightening of credit led to a void in the financing market for individual trucks. Normand says that it used to be “if you could fog up a glass they would approve you” and almost overnight the availability of retail financing went away.
As a result, Mr. Normand has built his truck dealership with a twist where he not only sells trucks traditionally but he also has a “Rent to Buy” program for owner-operator truckers that do not have the credit to qualify for financing. Ultimately the customer ends up owning the truck but Normand’s National Truck Funding, LLC obtains the financing for the truck. It ends up as a win-win solution. What makes this more unique is that the bulk of the financing for the 500 trucks in the National Truck Funding fleet has come from private individuals. With the bank regulations being so difficult Normand has been able to offer friends and acquaintances the opportunity to get a great return with a secured investment and at the same time has helped put 500 truckers into trucks. There is great pride in his helping these 500 achieve their own American Dream.