When David Boatman, former chief information officer of Sonic Automotive Inc., left the dealership group to start his own business, he envisioned a technology company that would make extracting dealership data easy and inexpensive.
Little did he know back in March 2004 that his timing would be just about perfect for starting the Charlotte, N.C., business. Drive Technology Group Inc. is benefiting from the fallout over the Reynolds and Reynolds Co. crackdown on third-party access to dealership management systems.
Reynolds, the largest vendor of U.S. dealership management systems, is shutting down access to modems that it had used to maintain its system. The decision affects hundreds if not thousands of large and small software companies that dealerships hire to extract data from their computer systems.
These vendors typically gain access to the Reynolds system through these maintenance modems.
Drive Technology, with its DriveWay product, does not use maintenance modems. Instead, a dealership buys another license from Reynolds to allow Drive Technology to use the Reynolds system, as if it were a new employee that needed full access to the system.