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Novatel Fix Gaze on Fleet Management Market

DigiCore Holdings, along with its subsidiary Ctrack, has been acquired by Novatel Wireless, an IoT specialist based in the US, for 4.40 South African Rand per share. This equates to a purchase price of approximately USD $87 million based on current exchange rates.

The agreement was given final approved by regulators and shareholders in October. Managing Director of Ctrack Europe John Wisdom said “We have been leveraging Novatel’s hardware expertise for some time already and it was this partnership which lead to the acquisition. It’s a coming together of Ctrack software expertise with Novatel’s hardware and IoT expertise into one entity. It’s a genuinely exciting proposition.”

Currently Ctrack is a specialist in the vehicle tracking and fleet management market. The company has a global footprint with strong presence in the UK, Germany, Australia and the Middle East. Wisdom stated “We serve a broad range of markets from traditional SME and enterprise fleet managements solutions through to specialist solutions for the mining industry and insurance market. We are hoping to build on that core market with Novatel and perhaps even explore new areas of the market. The focus will be on the fleet telematics side but I see opportunity for us in the plant equipment and static equipment markets.”

The telematics market has grown exponentially over the last five years driven by a number of factors. John Wisdom explains “One of the biggest drivers is a desire to gain an in depth view of driver behaviour. Solutions are being deployed to increase safety, reduce accidents and improve driver behaviour. These solutions have a big impact on things like insurance, fuel and maintenance costs which can save customers a lot of money. One of our customers is seeing about a 30% saving in fuel costs alone. Other leading technology deployments that have been pioneered by Ctrack have included pay as you go drive solutions with specific customer requirements, as well as the deployment of more than 1,000 RFID driver ID telematics units with KLM.”

The pay as you drive solutions are supported by the Telefonica Global SIM, allowing autonomous, unmanned rental and keyless use of a vehicle, transmitting information in realtime from the Ctrack MaXx system to the vehicle via the Telefonica network.

Ctrack started working with Telefonica SIMs two years ago which enabled them to monitor customer SIM estates via the Jasper portal.

The Jasper portal has revolutionised the way Ctrack support its customer’s sims and provides Ctrack with unrivalled visibility and control of their thousands of sims, whether the sims are in use in London or Eastern Europe.

Simon Boyd, Partner Account Manager – M2M at Telefonica, says “Working with Telefonica and Jasper has enabled Ctrack and their customers to really delve into the data that these solutions create. It’s this level of joined up thinking and technology which has helped CTrack maximise the potential gains from their solutions and cement their global position in the market. We look forward to seeing what exciting opportunities this acquisition will create in the market.”

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine