Autobytel Acquires Advanced Mobile to Provide Leading Mobile Capabilities to
Automotive Manufacturers and Dealerships
Autobytel Expands Services with Robust, Innovative Mobile Technologies to Help
Manufacturers and Dealers Better Connect with Car Buyers
IRVINE, Calif. -- September 30, 2013
Autobytel Inc. (Nasdaq: ABTL), the company dedicated to helping consumers and
dealers connect online, today announced it has acquired Advanced Mobile, LLC,
a provider of innovative mobile communications services designed specifically
for the automotive industry.
As a result of the acquisition, Autobytel will offer auto manufacturers and
dealers the ability to connect with consumers using a preferred method of text
communication via a secure platform that protects consumers’ privacy. In
addition, Autobytel will offer dealers a comprehensive suite of mobile
products, including mobile apps, mobile websites, Send2Phone capabilities and
text message marketing.
Founded in 2006 and based in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, Advanced Mobile
serves the automotive industry with a full range of advanced mobile
technologies. These technologies facilitate communication between dealers and
car buyers on smart phones and tablets at the time, place and in a manner
preferred by consumers. This advanced platform will be the core of a wide
array of mobile services Autobytel offers to its dealer and manufacturer
customers, and will also be available to consumers through Autobytel’s
Since 1995 when Autobytel pioneered the automotive Internet, the company has
grown to become a leading provider of new and used car leads and marketing
services for dealers and manufacturers nationwide. The company’s flagship
website, Autobytel.com, is one of the nation’s leading online resources to
help people research, shop for, buy, sell and own a car.
“We led the way nearly 20 years ago when we invented online car buying, and we
now intend to lead the way in mobile,” said Jeffrey Coats, President and Chief
Executive Officer of Autobytel Inc. “Last year, more than 326 million U.S.
wireless subscribers sent more than 2 trillion text messages, or more than 171
billion per month. We believe that the explosive growth in smart phone and
tablet use represents significant mobile communications opportunities,
especially for the automotive industry, which has been searching for ways to
safely and legally utilize mobile technologies. This acquisition enables us to
offer the industry the mobile resources it requires to successfully
communicate with car buyers in a preferred manner.
“We expect the technology and team built by Advanced Mobile to be an important
asset to Autobytel and to its dealer and manufacturer customers, allowing them
to capitalize on the new frontier of mobile,” Coats said. “Adding these new
and innovative mobile technologies to the high-quality leads we deliver to
customers—internally generated leads that convert to sales at roughly three
times the estimated industry average—will help manufacturers and dealers sell
more cars, more efficiently.”
“We created Advanced Mobile to help clients cultivate a mobile eco-system to
drive their businesses forward,” said Bret J. Dunlap, President and Chief
Executive Officer of Advanced Mobile. “We believe that our extensive suite of
products and industry experience is highly valuable to auto dealers and
manufacturers who are seeking the greatest possible returns for their
marketing investments. Our goal of helping clients sell more cars is
completely aligned with Autobytel’s, and we look forward to continuing to help
our customers realize the full benefits of mobile technology.”
The initial consideration for the acquisition was $2.5 million in cash. In
addition, Advanced Mobile may earn up to an additional $1.5 million in
contingent payments based on the revenue and gross profit performance of the
acquired business over a three-year period commencing January 1, 2014.
Dunlap will join Autobytel as Senior Vice President, Mobile. As an inducement
for joining the company, Dunlap was granted an option to acquire 88,641 shares
of Autobytel common stock at an exercise price of $7.17 per share. The option
will initially vest based on the revenue and gross profit performance of the
acquired business over the next three years and then on Dunlap’s time of
service with Autobytel.
B. Riley & Co., LLC acted as Autobytel’s exclusive financial advisor for this
About Autobytel Inc.
Autobytel Inc., an online leader offering consumer leads and marketing
resources to car dealers and manufacturers and providing consumers with the
information they need to purchase new and used cars, pioneered the automotive
Internet when it launched its flagship website, www.autobytel.com, in 1995.
Autobytel continues to offer innovative products and services to help
consumers buy, and auto dealers and manufacturers sell, more used and new
cars. Autobytel has helped tens of millions of automotive consumers research
vehicles; connected thousands of dealers nationwide with motivated car buyers;
and helped every major automaker market its brand online. Through its flagship
website, network of automotive sites and respected online affiliates,
Autobytel continues its dedication to innovating the industry’s highest
quality Internet programs to provide consumers with a comprehensive and
positive automotive research and purchasing experience, and auto dealers,
dealer groups and auto manufacturers with some of the industry’s most
productive and cost-effective customer referral and marketing programs.
Investors and other interested parties can receive Autobytel news releases and
invitations to special events by accessing the online registration form at
Autobytel Investor Alerts.
Forward-Looking Statements Disclaimer
The statements contained in this press release that are not historical facts
are forward-looking statements under the federal securities laws. These
forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, planned new product
offerings and anticipated contributions of Advanced Mobile, are not guarantees
of future performance and involve assumptions and risks and uncertainties that
are difficult to predict. Actual outcomes and results may differ materially
from what is expressed in, or implied by, these forward-looking statements.
Autobytel undertakes no obligation to update publicly any forward-looking
statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or
otherwise. Among the important factors that could cause actual results to
differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, the forward-looking
statements are the company’s ability to integrate and market the acquired
technology, changes in communications technologies and consumer preferences,
changes in general economic conditions; the financial condition of automobile
manufacturers and dealers; disruptions in automobile production; changes in
fuel prices; the economic impact of terrorist attacks, political revolutions
or military actions; failure of our internet security measures; dealer
attrition; pressure on dealer fees; increased or unexpected competition; the
failure of new products and services to meet expectations; failure to retain
key employees or attract and integrate new employees; actual costs and
expenses exceeding charges taken by Autobytel; changes in laws and
regulations; costs of legal matters, including, defending lawsuits and
undertaking investigations and related matters; and other matters disclosed in
Autobytel’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Investors are
strongly encouraged to review the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the
year ended December 31, 2012 and other filings with the Securities and
Exchange Commission for a discussion of risks and uncertainties that could
affect the business, operating results, or financial condition of Autobytel
and the market price of the company’s stock.
Chief Financial Officer
Roger Pondel/Laurie Berman
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