The AmeriGO RV Club notified its 50,000 consumer members as well as dealers, campgrounds, and other partners that, effective today (July 17) it is suspending business operations while still working to obtain financing for the fledgling national consumer club.
In making the announcement, AmeriGO Chairman Joe McAdams said the interest from the RV industry and consumer market for the AmeriGO concept has been “very gratifying and extremely strong,” but the club’s management needed to suspend operations while it explored financing options.
“We still believe very strongly that the concept is much needed in our industry. We are continuing to search for additional funding or a suitable partner within the coming months,” McAdams stated, adding that AmeriGO officials will update members on further status changes as warranted.
AmeriGO was founded in 2013 by McAdams and fellow RV industry veterans Joe Daquino and Mike Schneider, all of whom are former executives of Ventura, California-based Affinity Group Inc.
The independent RV consumer club has been positioned as an affordable membership organization that cultivates a vibrant online community dedicated to RV enthusiasts throughout North America who enjoy benefits, services, and discounts via partnerships with companies across the industry, including resorts and campgrounds, RV dealers, and insurance, financing, and warranty providers.
“Our goal in creating AmeriGO is to build a trusted resource for products, services, and information that adds value and security for the RV enthusiast by providing access to and savings at our premier network of RV vendors, dealers, and campgrounds,” AmeriGO officials stated in September 2013 in announcing the formation of the club.
While it not that unusual for membership camping organizations to experience financial difficulties resulting in reduced services and camping options for its members, it is highly unusual to suspend operations during the first two years of operation.
One also wonders whether suspending operations and ceasing to operate as a viable company are, in this case, one and the same.
Unanswered questions remain. Are the membership camping organization’s financial difficulties due to a failed business model? Did the promoters fail to provide value to the network of RV business partners? Did the promoters over-compensate themselves? Will full disclosure to the membership be forthcoming?
You don’t pay the price for success. You pay the price for failure.