Philip Van Ngo and Michael G. Ramos met while working in Corporate America at a mid-sized insurance company out of Menlo Park, CA. Although working on completely different sides of the business, Pacific Specialty Insurance Company (PSIC) gave Philip and Michael an opportunity to cultivate a relationship that would eventually lead to the formation of Your Car Dealer Bond LLC (YCDB) in late 2011. YCDB was developed as a fully online insurance agency with a razor-sharp focus on the California Auto Dealer Market.
To be honest, I was referring used car dealers that needed a bond to several insurance agents that were “supposed experts” in the field. They promised to provide the dealers I referred with good service and fair quotes and I’m sure you can guess how that story ended. The problem started when a dealer would tell me that they were not getting serviced for up to 3 days at times. We all get busy but I thought that level of service was unacceptable. And so Your Car Dealer Bond was borne.
YCDB’s humble beginning of writing $85,000 of GWP in its first full year (2012) was exciting for Philip and Michael. A real confidence-builder for us was that this was being accomplished while both retained their full-time positions with PSIC. Given the non-conflicting nature of the surety and insurance markets, PSIC had no problems blessing the endeavor which continues to grow to this day.
2013 was a year that saw an increase of nearly 3x but more importantly, YCDB began building out vital personnel and technological infrastructure. YCDB’s licensing footprint was also established by obtaining non-residence licensing in 20+ states, which has since been trimmed down to 13 jurisdictions (CA, AZ, FL, IL, LA, MI, NV, NM, NC, OR, PA, UT, WV) with an emphasis on California.
In 2014, marked another year of 3x growth for Your Car Dealer Bond, while both Michael and Phillip remained in their full-time PSIC positions. Our support group was the only reason that this type of growth was possible. This support staff continues to be a major source of our success.
Michael resigned from PSIC in January of 2015 to run YCDB on a full-time basis. YCDB established licensing for a subsidiary company in 2015 by the name of Cal-Surety and Insurance Services for the purposes of separation and optionality.
With over seven (7) years of Network Administration experience at the time YCDB was launched, Phillip brought a technical aspect to the business that allowed complete and comprehensive remote connectivity 24/7. Over time we’ve added seven (7) remote stations that are positioned throughout California and the sophistication of the system architecture allows for a seamless integration of additional workstations that could be geographically positioned anywhere in the world. The platform has been engineered with multiple layers of redundancy for optimal performance and data safeguarding.
Phillip maintains a full-time IT position within a non-profit organization in the Silicon Valley much closer to his home. Phillip’s attention to detail coupled with over 25,000 hours of experience working in a technological capacity has proven to be vital components to YCDB’s success.
Michael’s insurance career commenced with him working for a small full-service insurance agency, a large auto insurance writer, and a Managing General Agency. This exposure to the business over those initial three (3) years was parlayed into a Commercial Underwriting position with PSIC in 2000.
Over the course of a decade. Mike Ramos worked his way up the ranks to a Nationwide Commercial and Personal Lines Director position which he held for 6 years before leaving in January of 2015 to commit full time to YCDB. Michael worked in a variety of positions within Product Development, Sales & Marketing, and Underwriting Departments and was a vital component of the team that grew PSIC from $5M to $250M in Gross Written Premium, while maintaining a 10-year total combined ratio of 88.2%.
YCDB has released an updated and completely overhauled website (you are on it), we updated our Facebook page, and Youtube channel for best results. We are also in the process of creating and tuning up some unbelievably useful content to California Car Dealers. While others like to paint with as wide a brush as possible when marketing, YCDB takes a different approach. We want to really target where our expertise sets us apart from the rest and where we can have the biggest impact on a dealer’s bottom line.
In a typical sequence, these are some of the steps we can help simplify for a Used Car Dealer:
Here’s another way to say it that every auto dealer in America would understand. Which would you rather have a business model based on #1 or #2 below:
Your business deserves a chance to survive! If you are the used car dealer that doesn’t understand this then your business has no chance of making it past a few years. That’s just being honest. Let us operate as your design team so you can back to doing what you do best which is find, buy, and sell used cars.
Robert Large, Tim Summers, Jeff Kenny, are just a few of the great minds I’ve learned from over the years. Mark Preininger, Zak Belanger, Brian Weaver, also make that list. Brian McSweeney, Vivian Tafolla, and Susan Valencia have also helped in molding my skillset and career. Big shot out to Mike McGraw, Jack McGraw, and John McGraw for always being very fair with me and giving me the opportunity.