• Oct 27th 2010 at 9:01AM
  • 21
Consumer car search website AutoTrader.com is now the owner of a brand new (to them) Kelley Blue Book and KBB's CDM Data and CDM Dealer Services. The amount of the transaction hasn't been divulged, but at least on the face of it, it makes perfect sense: once integrated, Kelley's valuation tools will practically be stuck to the pixelated windows of all those used cars of suspect value. KBB will continue as a subsidiary of Auto Trader and remain based in Irvine, California.

Those interested in all the nitty-gritty details can click past the break for the complete press release.

[Source: AutoTrader.com via Ward's Auto]
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AutoTrader.com to Purchase Kelley Blue Book

ATLANTA and IRVINE, Calif., Oct. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- AutoTrader.com, the Internet's ultimate automotive marketplace and consumer information web site, announces that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com), one of the most recognized and influential brands in the automotive industry. As part of the deal, AutoTrader.com will also acquire Kelley Blue Book's sister companies CDMdata and CDM Dealer Services.

Details of the transaction are not being disclosed. Kelley Blue Book will operate as a subsidiary of AutoTrader.com and continue to be headquartered in Irvine, CA. The deal is expected to close by the end of the year. J.P. Morgan acted as Kelley Blue Book's exclusive financial advisor through this process. Goldman, Sachs & Co. acted as financial advisor to AutoTrader.com.

"AutoTrader.com is excited about becoming the new owner of Kelley Blue Book because we believe the company has a great future," said AutoTrader.com President and CEO, Chip Perry. "Kelley Blue Book has a wonderful history as an iconic brand and trusted provider of vehicle information to generations of car buyers and sellers, and as we look into the future we believe together we can bring a host of new technologies and tools to market that will significantly improve the car shopping process for consumers, and help auto dealers and manufacturers better capitalize on the fundamental efficiency advantages of the Internet."

"The future that lies before us is full of potential," said Kelley Blue Book President and CEO Paul Johnson. "We are proud of the Kelley Blue Book brand and our many accomplishments over the past 84 years. Becoming part of the AutoTrader.com family of companies will help us accelerate our growth in the vehicle valuation and consumer car shopping spaces. By working together, we can help all of our customers achieve their goals by providing best-in-class values, information, products and services."

AutoTrader.com strongly believes in maintaining Kelley Blue Book's independent and unbiased position in the marketplace. Furthermore, AutoTrader.com is committed to maintaining and strengthening Kelley Blue Book's role as The Trusted Resource® for vehicle valuation and other important industry information among consumers, dealers, manufacturers, financial and governmental institutions. Paul Johnson and the rest of Kelley Blue Book's leadership team will remain in place and continue to enhance the company's brand in collaboration with AutoTrader.com.

"The Internet has become a primary marketing channel for auto dealers and manufacturers to reach and influence consumers during the vehicle purchase process," added Perry. "We believe our two companies are well positioned in this very competitive environment to help the industry adopt and embrace new tools and technologies that will drive higher levels of efficiency and profitability among both dealers and manufacturers over the next decade."

Founded 12 years ago, AutoTrader.com quickly became a premier online destination where vehicle sellers and buyers connect and initiate automotive transactions. With innovative marketing tools and one of the largest audiences of in-market auto shoppers on the Web, AutoTrader.com has become a leading resource for auto dealers and manufacturers to present their vehicles for sale, target shoppers and seek to influence shopper and buyer behavior via highly targeted and cost effective online advertising. For the auto shopper, AutoTrader.com offers a wealth of research-and-compare functions, search tools and inventory of cars for sale, all of which allows car shoppers to find the perfect car to meet their individual needs.

Kelley Blue Book, founded in 1926, launched its top rated Web site in 1995 and is now a leading provider of new and used vehicle pricing information to the auto industry. The company provides its values to dealers, banks, finance and insurance companies nationwide on a weekly basis. In the last few years, the company implemented a new multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art vehicle information management system, positioning the company to deliver market insights.

About AutoTrader.com
Atlanta-based AutoTrader.com, created in 1997, is the Internet's ultimate automotive marketplace and consumer information website. AutoTrader.com aggregates in a single location millions of new cars, used cars and certified pre-owned cars from thousands of auto dealers and private sellers and is a leading online resource for auto dealers, individuals and manufacturers to advertise and market their vehicles to in-market shoppers. The company also provides a robust suite of software tools for dealers and manufacturers to help them manage and market their vehicle inventory and display advertising on the Internet. AutoTrader.com continues to grow key business metrics, including revenue, profitability and site traffic. Today, AutoTrader.com attracts more than 15 million unique monthly visitors who utilize the site to review descriptions, photos and videos of vehicles for sale; research and compare vehicles; review pricing and specials; and read auto-related content like buying and selling tips and editorial coverage of major auto shows and automotive trends. AutoTrader.com operates two other auto marketing brands, AutoTraderClassics.com and AutoTraderLatino.com. AutoTrader.com also owns used vehicle management software company vAuto. AutoTrader.com is a majority-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises. Providence Equity Partners is a 25 percent owner of the company and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is also an investor. For more information, please visit www.autotrader.com.

About Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com)
Since 1926, Kelley Blue Book, The Trusted Resource®, has provided vehicle buyers and sellers with the new- and used-vehicle information they need to accomplish their goals with confidence. The company's top-rated website, www.kbb.com, provides the most up-to-date pricing and values, including the Fair Purchase Price, which reports what buyers are paying for new cars. The company also reports vehicle pricing and values via products and services, including software products and the famous Blue Book® Official Guide. According to the C.A. Walker Research Solutions, Inc. - 2009 Spring Automotive Website Usefulness Study, kbb.com is the most useful automotive information website among new- and used-vehicle shoppers, and half of online vehicle shoppers visit kbb.com. Kelley Blue Book's kbb.com also is a W3 Silver Award winner, sanctioned by the International Academy of Visual Arts. Kbb.com is a leading provider of new car prices, used car values, car reviews, new cars for sale, used cars for sale, and car dealer locations.

SOURCE AutoTrader.com

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      So.... If dealerships don't use KBB or NADA, what do they use?

      I am selling/trading my car this coming spring and both KBB & NADA have my car at about the same price point.

      What is a consumer that's not in the "business" suppose to go by to assess their cars value??

      On a side note; do dealers typically accept trades that would be considered "fair" by kbb or "rough" by Nada?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Dealers use Black Book and for real time pricing Manheim, the market changes daily and auction reports are the most accurate. Black book is still being produced and we get them here weekly. As far as WDC...maybe I am missing something but Car Fax doesn't give a value to a vehicle. Maybe you are talking about CarMax? Also your cars TRUE value is what is called Fair Market Value..that is the value of your car if you are not trading..not buying ...just want to get rid of the car. If you don't ask for that you are getting a trade value which could include money from the front end of the deal or for those not in the car business, the vehicle you are buying. If you want the best deal buy from a store that doesn't have commissioned salespeople..they are out there, you just have to look. Those not on commission will look out for your best interest and truely care about you being taken care of, not making gobs of money off of you. KBB is a guide, as is NADA...neither will cut you a check for the value of your car and that is why they are guides instead of guarantees..
      • 4 Years Ago
      I was always told by dealers that they used the black book.
      I have never seen this black book, but I know it exists.
        • 4 Years Ago
        My father sold Buicks from 1970-2002 and the dealership he worked at always used Black Book. I always remember it coming in the mail. I believe it was a monthly. It was about the size of a pad of Post-It® notes, but a little taller - bound on top and the paper was phone book thin so the whole thing was probably only about 1/4 inch thick.

        It always came wrapped like a pack of baseball cards.

        I'm not sure if Black Book even publishes the print version anymore. I know that they have an online service now.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I wonder what the KBB value of SimpleCar's Mirage is.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I have a couple of friends in the car business. Your trade-in is never appraised using KBB. It is done by NADA or here in Michigan, DADA. However when your hoopty is taking up space on the used car lot the KBB "value" is proudly shown. I asked my friend why couldn't I get get KBB value for my trade, he said, "you can, ask them for a check".
      • 4 Years Ago
      I never had much faith in KBB. They said my car was worth $14,000 and I topok it to Car fax and it was apparised at $22.000. KBB said since it was a car made in Canada it was worth less. I told the to shove it. Why would Auto Trader even want them?Another Company sold.
      • 4 Years Ago
      What condition was KBB in?
        • 4 Years Ago
        KBB was in rough condition.

        Banks use NADA to value cars they finance.
        Insurance companies use NADA to buy out cars.
        Dealers use NADA to appraise trades, NADA has 3 tiers of trade in condition, KBB has 1.

        So if you think you are preparing yourself by knowing the KBB of your trade you are shooting yourself in the foot, no one cars about KBB except maybe some guy buying a car out of your garage.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I wonder if they got Trade-In Value, Private Party Value, Suggested Retail Value or
        Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Value. Hmm!
        • 4 Years Ago
        I see what you did there.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I would say "Fair".

        The question is - did AutoTrader buy KBB at private party or dealer trade-in value?
        • 4 Years Ago
        hahaha... that was good.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I wish I'd know it was for sale - I'd have paid any amount of money for it, and then I'd change the blue book value of my car to that amount of money + $50,000, and then trade it in at one of those places that promises to give you kelly blue book value on your trade. Then I'd change it back. And then I'd change the blue book value of bmw X6 to 30 cents, just out of spite.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I have to respectfully disagree, dave0mary. The X6 is rubbish and $0.30 resale value sounds about right to me.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "just out of spite."

      • 4 Years Ago
      Hrm, going to the autotrader website, they were already in partnership with NADA. I wonder why they made this move.
      • 4 Years Ago
      KBB and NADA both claim to know the value of a vehicle but neither one will write a check for it.

      Dealers only use the Black Book....It based on real money auction results. They won't write a check either but the values are based on someone who has.
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