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December 20, 2016 - Industry News

RouteOne Targeting Digital Retailing With Acquisition of MaximTrak

MaximTrak President Jim Maxim Jr.

The deal was executed through a wholly owned subsidiary developed by RouteOne. It will operate as MaximTrak Technologies under the leadership of RouteOne CEO Justin Oesterle and MaximTrak President Jim Maxim Jr.

December 20, 2016 - Industry News

CRM Usage a Struggle for Average Dealerships, Study Shows

A recent study co-released by VinSolutions and DealerKnows analyzed customer relationship management (CRM) software usage at dealerships. It found some notable differences between average and best-in-class dealers.

Tags: CRM, DealerKnows, Study, VinSolutions

December 20, 2016 - Industry News

Autobytel to Sell Specialty Finance Leads Product to Internet Brands

Per the agreement, the SFL product will be sold for $3.2 million in cash, as well as additional transition licensing income that will total $1.6 million over a five-year period.

Tags: Autobytel, Definitive Agreement, Internet Brands Inc., Transaction

December 20, 2016 - Industry News

GWC Warranty Caps Off Charitable Year With Toy Drive Donation

GWC Warranty employees across the country donated hundreds of toys and more than $1,000 to help families of hospitalized children shop for holiday gifts.

Tags: Charity, Donation, GWC Warranty Corporation

December 20, 2016 - Industry News

Wheel's Automotive to Service Kia Canada's CPO Marketing Needs

On Jan. 12, 2017, Wheel’s Automotive Dealer Supplies Inc. will begin servicing the certified pre-owned merchandising and marketing needs of Kia Canada’s network of dealers.

Tags: Canada, CPO, Kia, Wheel's Automotive Dealer Supplies Inc.

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

CarMax, Asbury, West-Herr Automotive Settle FTC Recall Advertising Charges

The three retailers agreed to settle FTC charges that they touted rigorous inspections while failing to disclose that some vehicles were subject to unrepaired safety recalls. The FTC also finalizes orders against GM and two other sellers in similar cases settled earlier this year.

Tags: Asbury Automotive, CarMax, Deceptive Advertising, Federal Trade Commission, vehicle recall, West-Herr Automotive

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

U Drive Acceptance Opens New Office in Sioux City, Iowa

Since 2013, UDAC had been sharing office space with its affiliated auto dealership, Big Deal Auto Plaza. According to Neil Evans, the company’s vice president, the finance source's higher-than-projected growth forced the moved to the new office.

Tags: Grand Opening, Loan Origination System, Subprime Financing, U Drive Acceptance Corp.

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

KEEPS Adds Former Ford Executive to Board of Directors

KEEPS Inc., a provider of retail automotive service department analytics, repair order analysis, and advanced service management support, has appointed James G. O’Connor to its board of directors, the company announced this week.

Tags: Board of Directors, hiring, KEEPS Inc.

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

Auto/Mate Now Integrated Into DealerOps

As part of the integration, dealerships that use both vendors’ solutions will now receive automatic and seamless updates from their Auto/Mate Automotive Management Productivity Suite (AMPS) software into their DealerOps Platform.

Tags: Auto/Mate, Auto/Mate Dealership Systems, DealerOps, Mobile Applications, technology

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

AutoBase Customers to Gain Access to Flick Fusion's Video Marketing Platform

Flick Fusion has announced a partnership with AutoBase that will allow users of the company's inventory merchandising solutions to create and distribute inventory videos, personalized walkaround videos, dealership value proposition videos, customer testimonial videos and more.

Tags: AutoBase, Flick Fusion, Smart Flicks, Video Marketing

December 19, 2016 - Industry News

Carvana Partners With Two Georgia Credit Unions

In two separate announcements, Carvana today announced that it has partnered with Associated Credit Union and LGE Community Credit Union to offer their members access to certified and competitively priced vehicles through an online car-buying experience.

Tags: Carvana, Credit Unions, Online Buying

December 15, 2016 - Industry News

Subprime Car Buyers to Feel Fed's Rate Hike, Analyst Says

For the second time in 10 years, the Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee unanimously voted to raise the federal interest rate on Dec. 14. The impact of the rate hike should be minimal for all but one consumer segment, a Black Book analyst says.

Tags: Federal Interest Rate, Government, interest rates

December 15, 2016 - Industry News

Equifax Adds Income, Employment Verification Tools

In addition to confirming basic income and employment information, dealers can now use this new verification technology to view an applicant's job tenure, officials said.

Tags: Employment Verification, Equifax, Income, technology

December 15, 2016 - Industry News

NADAUCG: Wholesale Prices Fall More Than Expected in November

Wholesale prices for vehicles up to eight years in age depreciated more than expected last month, falling 3.3% on a monthly basis. That’s more than double the 1.4% average drop recorded during November the past three years, according to the NADA Used Car Guide.

December 15, 2016 - Industry News

AutoGravity Unveils Vehicle Financing App

Add AutoGravity to the growing list of firms looking to digitize the finance portion of the car-buying process. The fintech firm unveiled today a mobile app that will allow California car buyers to secure vehicle financing or a lease.

Tags: AutoGravity, Financing, Mobile Applications, technology

December 15, 2016 - Industry News

SouthwestRe Looking to Add Agents in 2017

SouthwestRe announced plans to aggressively expand into new territories beginning in 2017. The company is now recruiting independent agents to support this effort throughout the continental United States.

Tags: Agents, F&I, SouthwestRe

December 14, 2016 - Industry News

Subprime Borrowers, Expected Interest Rate Hikes to Drive Up Delinquency Rates in 2017

Transunion projects the auto loan delinquency rate for consumers with payments 60 or more days past due to close the year at 1.4%, the highest level since year-end 2009. Even with this increase, TransUnion said delinquency rates will remain well below levels observed during the last recession.

Tags: Auto Loan Delinquency Rate, Credit, Delinquencies, TransUnion

December 14, 2016 - Industry News

Mass Action Lawsuit Against Carfax Dismissed

The $350 million mass action lawsuit against Carfax, which listed nearly 500 dealers and stalled the sale of its parent company R.L. Polk & Co. before its eventual sale to IHS three years ago, has been dismissed.

Tags: Carfax, Lawsuit

December 14, 2016 - Industry News

EFG Companies Names Winner of 2016 Innovator of the Year Award

EFG Companies and Northwood University have named Team Vigilance the winner of their 2016 Innovator of the Year competition. The three-person team was awarded $25,000, and could see their winning product developed by EFG for market availability.

Tags: Customer Retention, EFG COmpanies, Innovator of the Year Award, Northwood University, technology

December 14, 2016 - Industry News

Ron Tonkin Dealerships Sold to Gee Automotive

With the two groups selling a combined 38,771 vehicles in 2015, the acquisition creates one of the nation’s Top 50 dealer groups and the one of the largest dealer groups on the West Coast. The Tonkin name will remain on all of the group's 21 dealerships, and the brand will continue to grow and expand in the Portland area, officials said.

Tags: Acquisition, Dealer Group, Gee Automotive Co., Ron Tonkin

December 14, 2016 - Industry News

Prodigy Launches End-to-End Sales Platform

Prodigy, a Stanford-StartX company dedicated to building solutions for auto retail, announced the launch of an all-in-one, tablet-based sales platform for dealerships.

Tags: Prodigy, Sales Process, technology

December 13, 2016 - Industry News

Google Parent Company Launches Self-Driving Technology Company

John Krafcik, the former president of TrueCar and the current CEO of Google’s self-driving car division, announced in a blog post that Google’s parent company has launched Waymo, a self-driving technology company.

Tags: Autonomous Driving, Google, Self Driving, technology, Waymo

December 13, 2016 - Industry News

Portfolio’s Dallas Office Named a ‘2017 Best Place to Work For in Texas'

The F&I product provider joins 100 other companies on the list. This was the first time the company entered the contest, which is designed to recognize and honor the best places of employment in Texas, benefiting the state economy, workforce and business.

Tags: F&I Product Provider, Portfolio, reinsurance, vehicle service contracts

December 13, 2016 - Industry News

Trust in Salespeople Top Painpoint for Consumers, DealerSocket Reports

Cutting transaction times was the No. 1 focus for franchised dealers in 2016, but it wasn't the top painpoint for car buyers, according to DealerSocket's 2016 Dealership Action Report.

Tags: Car-Buying Experience, DealerSocket, J.D. Power, Report, Survey, technology

December 13, 2016 - Industry News

Reputation Butler to Shake Up the Online Review Game

The company’s directors say Reputation Butler tackles a problem that dealerships face almost daily: monitoring and keeping track of online consumer reviews on countless platforms.

Tags: Cars.com, Customer Reviews, Dealerrater, Edmunds, online reputation management, reputation management, SureCritic, Yellow Pages, Yelp