Cliff Banks - The Banks Report

Internet Brands Acquires Auto Credit Express

June 3, 2016 — Internet Brands, owned by private equity firm KKR, acquired Auto Credit Express earlier this week. With the acquisition, Internet Brands creates an expanded presence into the subprime vehicle loan market. Auto Credit Express, founded in 1999, matches subprime customers with financing lenders and dealers. It also provides training for dealers selling to subprime… Continue Reading

CDK Global’s Future — Is a Sale in the Cards?

CDK Global’s Future — Is a Sale in the Cards?

May 30, 2016 — UPDATED — A swift kick in the butt from an activist investor followed by a company-wide restructuring has CDK Global’s stock price climbing while possibly signaling the technology firm could be sold within the next several months. This report analyzes the opportunities and challenges presented by the new restructuring and what it…

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Cliff Banks - The Banks Report

Ford Direct Names New CEO

May 16, 2016 — FordDirect announced today that industry veteran Mike Jurecki will be its new CEO effective June 6. Jurecki previously served as CEO of RouteOne for 14 years where he led the formation of the joint venture of the financial services firm. He replaces Stacey Coopes who left FordDirect in early December (Big… Continue Reading

The Modern Showroom — Thoughts from NADA

The Modern Showroom — Thoughts from NADA

Most dealerships today are configured to yesterday’s processes and experiences. The environment hasn’t kept up with the digital age.  While most dealerships have effective websites and Internet processes, their store images often don’t reflect the new realities of today’s society – touch screen mobile devices; interactive and personalized digital signage and virtual reality (VR) applications. But… Continue Reading

1st Quarter Recap & Future Outlook for Auto Retail Vendor Acquisitions

1st Quarter Recap & Future Outlook for Auto Retail Vendor Acquisitions

April 5, 2016 — Despite a relatively quiet first quarter, the hot merger and acquisition pace among automotive retail vendors the last couple of years should continue well into 2016. From January 2014 to December 2015, the industry saw 47 IPOs, acquisitions and investments totaling an estimated $37 billion in capital changing hands. (Read TBR’s recap…

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Vista Equity Completes Acquisition of Solera Holdings

Vista Equity Completes Acquisition of Solera Holdings

March 4, 2016 — After several weeks of uncertainty created by a tanking junk bond market, Vista Equity Partners completed its acquisition of Solera Holdings, a global firm that provides risk and asset management software for the automotive industry. Vista led an investment group comprised of Koch Equity Development and Goldman Sachs in the approximately $6.5… Continue Reading