Quorum Information Technologies Inc. announced Tuesday in St. John’s that the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) will provide a $1.5 million interest-free repayable loan to assist the company with its Lead Generation Data Hub project.
Quorum is a North American company focused on developing, marketing, implementing and supporting its portfolio of software and services for automotive dealerships.
The loan comes through the Atlantic Innovation Fund which is designed to help companies develop and commercialize new or improved products or services. It was formally announced at a news conference Tuesday by Indigenous Services Minister Seamus O'Regan.
A news release states that by using its advanced XSellerator Dealership Management System (DMS) tools as a foundation, Quorum will develop a data hub that integrates information about the customer from the DMS, the automaker, and third party partners.
Over a two-year span, Quorum will build the architecture required to mine the existing DMS data, augment it with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) and existing artificial intelligence data opportunities, and build features that present dealership staff with easily actionable sales, service and parts leads.
“The XSellerator Dealership Management System is focused on streamlining operations and on dealer revenue generation and customer satisfaction,” said Dan Ichelson, XSellerator’s vice president of operations.
“The data hub project will focus on revenue generation by providing sales, service and parts leads to the dealership. Taking a more holistic view of the entire automotive ecosystem, we plan to use a combination of XSellerator DMS, OEM and third party data. With that complete data set, we will apply AI tools to generate customer specific leads that will be presented to dealership staff within the XSellerator DMS. The leads will be very easy to action and in many cases dealership staff will be able to automatically allow the system to action the leads.”
Marilyn Bown, Quorum’s chief financial officer, said the the XSellerator division is constantly innovating with the OEMs at a significant cost to the XSellerator business unit.
“These (ACOA) funds will allow us to leverage that development and integration with other third party partners to deliver a truly unique lead generation approach for dealerships,” Bown said.
Key terms of the ACOA repayable loan are: ACOA will contribute 75 per cent of eligible costs up to a maximum of $1,542,245; Quorum’s interest expense related to the loan is 0 per cent; there are no principal repayments required under the loan until Sept. 1, 2022, at which time the loan will be repaid with installments calculated based on a percentage of gross revenues over five years; and the repayable investment is unsecured.
“Innovative companies like Quorum know that Newfoundland and Labrador is a gateway to global markets,” said O’Regan. “Today we're investing alongside Quorum's dedicated leaders and employees; competing with the world from right here at home.”