KAR Auction Bolsters Tech Offerings With Acquisition of Clearplan

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KAR Auction Services is tapping into technology to better its operations with its acquisition this week of Clearplan.

Clearplan, a Reno, Nev.-based company that offers a digital hub for repossession workflow management, logistics, and reporting. The digital platform connects thousands of recovery agents and lenders while enabling real-time communication to more efficiently list, log, and track vehicle recovery activity.

Clearplan will now become a part of KAR’s digital services group of companies. “By integrating Clearplan with our existing capabilities, we will be able to offer smarter, faster, and more convenient solutions that serve the entire asset-recovery ecosystem,” said Peter Kelly, KAR’s president of digital services.

The acquisition brings new mobile technology and real-time data analytics to KAR’s portfolio of “software as a service” capability, including its Recovery Database Network, the press release notes. Subsidiary RDN provides specialized software and data solutions to customers across the repossession and disposition value chain.

Carmel, Ind.-based KAR is no stranger to acquisitions. The company has made other investments with a particular focus on data capabilities to bolster its position in the wholesale market. Last year, KAR acquired CarCo Technologies Inc. for $43 million in a move to add innovative data analytics to its operations.

“We’re focused on the wholesale market, the B2B space,” Chief Executive Jim Hallett said during the company’s third-quarter earnings call. “As I think about the future, I think about a global company that is providing all of these services and deploying all these assets that we have around the world.”

Back in February, KAR acquired mobility and fleet management software company STRATIM in a bid to get a “seat at the table” as mobility is in the early stages of evolving, Hallett said. 

“We’re really well-positioned to serve our customers and stay focused and stay disciplined on our space and not just chase every shiny object that might appear,” he said.

Last quarter, KAR reported an 11% increase in revenue, to $933.5 million, and a 23% increase in net income, to $77.5 million.

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