PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. — fusionZONE Automotive, (fusionZONE), a leader in digital marketing technologies for automotive dealers and OEMs, announced an investment by Primus Capital, a private equity firm based in Cleveland and Atlanta. The funding will be used to grow market share, invest in product development and expand services for new and existing clients.
Since its inception in 2009, fusionZONE has been on the cutting edge of web design and conversion technologies, enabling dealers to reach their customers faster and connect with them in real-time, driving higher engagement and ultimately, sales. fusionZONE’s responsive and mobile-optimized platform, its emphasis on site speed and its innovative lead-generation and lead-management tools such as FastRing and FastPrice have led to dramatic growth over the past several years. Additional fusionZONE offerings enable dealers to optimize their digital marketing spend across online channels, in harmony with their overall web presence.
“The automotive industry is experiencing rapid change due to evolving consumer behavior, which has led to an acceleration in digital investments,” said Brett Sutherlin, CEO and co-founder of fusionZONE. “This funding will enable us to fuel strategic initiatives, capture new product opportunities, deepen our relationships with OEMs, and continue our excellent customer service.” Added Karen Sutherlin, COO and co-founder of fusionZONE, “Primus’ track record of success with SaaS companies, and in particular its experience in the automotive technology space, will be extremely valuable in further scaling our business over time. We are very excited to have them as a partner in our next phase of growth.”
“Beyond a couple large names, the digital marketing technologies used by auto dealers are highly fragmented. We believe that fusionZONE is poised to be the next important company in the space given their ability to effectively engage with consumers where and when they shop, across any size of dealer, OEM, or geography. The client feedback on this company has been superlative,” said Ron Hess, Managing Director of Primus. Vasant Kamath, Principal of Primus, added, “fusionZONE’s award-winning product capabilities and industry-leading conversion rates separate it from the other vendors in the space. We are confident that this partnership will increase the company’s market share and further benefit its dealer clients.” As part of the recapitalization, Hess and Kamath will join the fusionZONE board of directors, as will long time automotive industry executive Steve Greenfield, who was formerly the Vice President of Product Development and Vice President of Business Development at AutoTrader.com.
Portico Capital Securities LLC acted as the exclusive financial advisor to fusionZONE for this transaction.