Lexus, which has a $1.6 billion market cap, has announced plans to slash its credit card churn rate from 35% to 15% per annum.
The move follows a $5 billion buyout of auto lender Liberty Mutual in December, which will slash the number of credit card transactions from 5.2 billion in 2020 to 3.3 billion in 2025.
But while the move is significant, the move has some critics calling it a gimmick.
While the move will cut off a potential cash flow source for Lexus in 2020, analysts say the move would not impact Lexus’ cash flow and will not help it meet the new $1 trillion in credit card debt.
“If we were to assume that Lexus would continue to spend as it did in 2020 in the future, that would reduce the value of the debt by $4.2 trillion over the next 20 years,” analyst Jim Johnson said in a research note.
Lexus will also be eliminating some of its “specials” and plans to offer fewer credit card benefits, including the ability to pay for gas, electricity, gas appliances, and cable, among other benefits.
The new plan will also mean that if you have a credit card and you’re looking for an auto loan, you’re out of luck, Johnson said.
So far, the plan appears to be a win for the company and for consumers, though some critics will still argue that the move could hurt Lexus as it plans for the new financial industry.
For example, a recent report from CreditCards.com shows that if Lexus keeps its credit cards churn rate unchanged at 15% until 2025, it could save $1 billion a year, but that is not enough to keep up with the growing need for consumer credit in the United States.
Even though the change to the plan will help Lexus and its customers save money, analysts are still worried about the impact it might have on the credit rating of the company.
A spokesperson for Lexuses credit card issuer, Lexus Financial, declined to comment.
Read more from Entertainment Weekly:Lexus FINISHED A $1B MONEY BAG FROM LONGBOARDER, HOSTING ITS NEXT COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS, THROUGH 2022The company is also planning to launch a new partnership with the online payment provider PayPal that will see Lexus partner with the payment processor to help the company more efficiently process payments and to provide an “unmatched set of resources for merchants,” according to a statement from the company last month.
PayPal, which is owned by eBay Inc., has recently come under scrutiny for its handling of customer credit card fraud, and has been under scrutiny by federal authorities for its relationship with credit card issuers.
The company also announced last month that it was partnering with Amazon.com Inc., a company that has come under fire for alleged ties to organized crime.
The company has also been accused of facilitating illegal sales of prescription drugs, including OxyContin.