CDK Global unveiled some new technological programs at the recent NADA Show, including one that the company says “is modernizing automotive retail.”
CDK Global, a provider of integrated information technology and digital marketing products to the automotive retail and adjacent industries, says its products automate and integrate all areas of the dealership and buying process.
That includes targeted digital advertising and marketing campaigns and the sale, financing, insuring, parts supply, repair, and maintenance of vehicles. Updates to its Fortellis Automotive Commerce Exchange Platform is one of those programs. CDK announced the launch of Fortellis Marketplace, a central hub, similar to app stores in other industries, where retail technology providers can sell their software applications to dealers and OEMs.
CDK Global also announced that it will eliminate access fees for Fortellis, which CDK says is the world’s first open, agnostic platform for the development and marketing of automotive application programming interfaces (APIs).
CDK says the Fortellis technology platform and its Developer Network and Marketplace connects software developers, OEMs and dealers, which the company says helping them create new experiences efficiently.
Also at NADA, CDK introduced the next generation of its Dealer Management System (DMS), called Drive Flex, which the company is describing as a first-of-its-kind web-based DMS.
And in yet another CDK announcement during the time period of the NADA show, the company said Dealer Intelligence, an automotive industry platform for enterprise business intelligence, reporting and analytics, has become a participant in the CDK Global Partner Program.
Regarding the first item — updates to its Fortellis Automotive Commerce Exchange Platform with the launch of the Fortellis marketplace — the company notes that the Fortellis Marketplace allows collaboration between developers, OEMs and dealers who can share a common platform and “create solutions that will move the automotive industry forward.”
What’s the impact of that innovation, integration and personalization? The company says car buyers will find the resulting streamlined customer experience at the dealership to be useful.
The company says eliminating access fees for Fortellis will also be useful and that it will spur innovation. CDK will charge no fees to join, to publish APIs, gain access to basic reporting and support, or to market different products to users.
The company will charge a nominal transaction fee, but the company notes that with more than 120 organizations becoming active users of the platform, that has created a “thriving community” that has contributed 90 registered products and 70 active sales opportunities, as well as an increasing number of APIs being published.
“While innovations are being created throughout the industry, getting these solutions to work across providers has made adoption challenging,” Ron Frey, executive vice president and chief strategy officer, CDK Global, said in a news release. “Fortellis provides efficiency and enables plug-and-play functionality, allowing users to select the desired solution without the hassle of custom integration.”
Discussing the next generation of the Drive Flex DMS, Rajiv Amar, executive vice president and chief technology officer, CDK Global, elaborated on his statement that the product is modernizing automotive retail. The company says Drive Flex’s workflows allow dealers to hire top employees regardless of their prior DMS experience. The next generation of Drive Flex is available to dealers with one or two locations, with what the company says is an improved user interface, reduced installation times and minimal learning curves.
“With these and other new technologies, dealers have greater ability to improve the car buying experience and optimize their businesses for success,” Amar said in a news release. “We are accelerating our investment by adding more engineers to efficiently bring this innovative technology to more dealerships of all sizes in the near future.”
Finally, regarding the news that Dealer Intelligence will participate in the CDK Global Partner Program, CDK noted that Dealer Intelligence will now be part of a marketplace of applications and integrations that CDK developed to help automotive dealers succeed.
CDK adds that joining the CDK Global Partner Program is important for DI to provide dealerships with a next-generation enterprise Business Intelligence platform and that by accessing DMS data seamlessly, reliably and in near-time, DI can provide customers with the actionable intelligence they need to optimize their financial and operational performance.
"With DI, you don't have to pull your team away from the business for days of training. DI is also universally affordable," Farra Majid, CEO and cofounder of DI, said in a news release. "Obtaining CDK certification is a significant milestone for us. We're excited about helping dealerships to more profitably and efficiently manage their businesses with actionable intelligence through tomorrow's business intelligence platform."
The company says its DI Business Intelligence platform offers dealers near real-time financial and operating performance management at every management level and across every department.