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Dealers gain IT benefit from BE rule changes

Multi-franchises dealers could slash their IT costs in half because of changes to block exemption regulations, according to dealer management system provider Pinewood.

Changes to new car distribution rules mean motor manufacturers are no longer permitted to specify which DMS franchisees must use. Now Pinewood says the door is open for dealers to rationalise their IT costs. Neville Briggs, Pinewood managing director, says: “As a legacy of the old rules, many retailers are running two, three or even four DMS systems side by side.

“This can mean four sets of support and training costs. But now dealers can rationalise to just one system and many will be able to cut costs by more than half.” Briggs says a number of multi-franchised Pinewood customers are already going down these routes, but declined to name dealerships.

He adds: “As long as the single system dealers choose is able to interface with manufacturer systems, which is something that companies like our self have been working hard to achieve, there is no disadvantage to having a single system.”

Meanwhile, Pinewood has announced that more than 200 Suzuki dealers are installing its DMS. Work is now under way to integrate Pinewood's Pinnacle with Suzuki's own dealer parts and vehicle ordering system. Ian Price, Suzuki GB general manager of sales, says: “We believe this product is the right one for our dealer network. Dealers who have seen it demonstrated agree.”

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