The shape of the fleet software market is changing as buying habits change and major companies start to get involved, says Chevin Fleet Solutions.
Specialist SMEs that previously dominated the sector have been largely being pushed out of the market, says managing director Ashley Sowerby of the fleet management software probider.
He explained: “For most of our 25 years, we found ourselves competing against industry specialists or relatively small software companies but that has definitely altered over the last two to three years.
“As an example, we recently entered a tender for fleet software where the other main entrants were IBM and Oracle, and this is by no means an unusual situation.”
As fleet software has become more sophisticated and more investment was needed to produce competitive products, some of the UK-based established players had fallen by the wayside, says Chevin.
“A couple remain but there are several brand names that will be familiar to the those who have worked in the fleet sector for some time that are now no longer in operation or have become effectively moribund and are just servicing existing users,” added Sowerby.
“To continue to compete at the highest level, we have become a genuinely international business with well-established offices in the UK, Australia and Continental Europe but other companies have failed to take that necessary leap.”
He explained that larger software companies were being asked to tender for the bigger fleet software contracts because the market now expected capabilities from providers that stretched well beyond fleet.
“Fleets recognise that the software needed to manage a fleet is really a sophisticated data management tool, so they want to be able to use it to control not just cars, vans, trucks and plant but to also be used for all kinds of asset management.
“It is this trend that has created an opening for big technology companies but is also opening doors for us.”