January 24, 2017 – Davenport, IA – Dealer Marketing Services, Inc. the makers of ProMax Unlimited, today announced a change in ownership structure for the first time in the company’s 23-year history. “I’m very excited to announce that CTO Darian Miller, who has worked side-by-side with me for 20 years, and COO Shane Born who has been here 14 years, have both acquired minority stakes in the company” said ProMax Founder and CEO John Palmer.
The Iowa-based maker of award winning software for automotive dealerships had previously been under the sole ownership of John Palmer since its inception in 1994. Palmer at that time had worked for over a decade in the retail auto industry and saw a need for software that would speed up the time-consuming process of desking deals and getting lender approvals. “I started ProMax 23 years ago, with nothing more than a vision and a programmer’s number I found in the yellow pages; it was a huge leap” said Palmer. “But I knew the market was there, and it was. Going from a paper desk log and doing calculations for every lender on each car, ProMax was a revelation - performing tasks in a matter of seconds that used to take hours or even days.”
From its initial offering of the industry’s first special finance desking solution in 1995, ProMax continued to expand and break new ground. They introduced the first internet-based full front end solution for auto dealers in 2002 and the first Compliance-integrated CRM/ILM in 2008. As one of the only resellers of all three credit bureaus in the U.S. auto industry, they have continually pioneered automotive soft pull technology, boasting both the first such solution in 2009, and the largest variety of automotive soft pull products being offered today. Additionally, ProMax has led innovation in dealer websites, lead generation, and more.
For the past two decades, ProMax’s innovative products have been built and overseen by Chief Technology Officer and head programmer Darian Miller, who now owns a ten percent stake in the company. “John Palmer invites his entire team to treat the company as their own. For two decades, I have embraced that attitude and worked hard to expand the functionality and feature set of ProMax. This new step forward renews that commitment and drive to make ProMax the best the industry has to offer” said Miller. “For any company, but particularly for a software company, we’ve had terrific longevity and continuity, and I think that speaks to how well this team works. We’re always moving forward, making progress.”
ProMax’s Chief Operating Officer Shane Born, who has been with the company for 14 years, has acquired a seven percent stake in the company. “I couldn’t be more excited to have this opportunity to invest in something I completely believe in” said Born. “We have an incredible team, an awesome product, great vendor relationships, excellent customers, and some game changers coming in 2017. I’ve worked with many of our 100 plus employees for over a decade, and yet they continue to amaze me. The combination of brilliance, hard work, and passion is exceptionally rare.”
Palmer shares his new co-owners’ optimism about the future: “Having these two key individuals with such rare talent, energy, and drive investing in acquiring a minority ownership stake ensures that this company will continue to lead the industry in innovation and be very successful for many years to come.”
This restructuring announcement comes in advance of the annual convention of the National Auto Dealers Association (NADA), an organization that has recognized ProMax as an “NADA Top Ten Company”.
ABOUT PROMAX UNLIMITED
Dealer Marketing Services, Inc. was formed in 1994 by John Palmer. In August of 1995, ProMax was introduced as a Special Finance software solution. In 1998, the software was expanded to handle all types of desking including new and used vehicle leasing, CRM, finance menus, inventory management, reports, and credit application submissions to lenders. In 2002, ProMax was introduced as the industry's first Internet-based full front end solution and today is used by over 2,000 automotive dealerships. The ProMax Unlimited internet application integrates with dealership DMS systems and can be used effectively in large dealer group situations as well as single location dealerships. Dealer Marketing Services, Inc. also provides credit bureaus, website development and hosting, internet leads, and direct mail services to help dealerships increase traffic. Learn more about ProMax Unlimited and Dealer Marketing Services, Inc. at www.ProMaxUnlimited.com.