The software engineers at the Hacienda office of Navman Wireless are rightfully proud of the many "firsts" their employer has to its credit. As a world leader in the provision of vehicle tracking via GPS satellite technology, Navman Wireless continues to pioneer in the development of systems that allow businesses to track, message, and monitor their fleet from almost any PC, at any location, for a fixed monthly cost. The company was founded in New Zealand in 1988 and is now headquartered in Glenview, Ill. Its products are deployed in more than 100,000 vehicles owned by more than 7,500 businesses around the globe, making Navman one of the world's largest fleet management providers with coverage on five continents.
With this kind of track record, Navman has added more than 20 new sales, marketing, and management personnel in recent months as part of a strategic initiative to increase U.S. market share. Product innovations will play a large role in this campaign.
At an industry conference in Detroit last June, the company's latest product, the Online AVL2 real-time fleet tracking and management system, earned high honors in a prestigious award category, the Best Telematics Service & Application for Commercial Vehicles.
"Navman's OnlineAVL2 is a GPS-based system that helps reduce fuel usage and optimize fleet operations by lowering operating costs, improving fleet productivity, and enhancing customer service," explains Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Paresh Nagda, who has been leading the engineering team at 4305 Hacienda Drive, as well as a group in New Zealand, for the past year. "This system includes the market's most comprehensive real-time and historical vehicle/driver activity reporting, as well as the first and only commercial-grade integrated dispatch/messaging/GPS device for in-vehicle use."
The reporting capabilities are invaluable in providing actionable information for fleet optimization, Nagda continues. For instance, the tracking data make it possible to uncover costly field practices like excessive vehicle idle times, underusage, and non-compliant driver behavior, so they can be remedied for improved productivity and cost savings. Maintenance modules make sure vehicles operate efficiently and go in for service as scheduled. Robust two-way messaging options allow dispatchers to alert drivers to changing route conditions, for example cancelling a stop because there is no pick-up that day. Drivers can relay updated information on estimated arrival times, for improved customer service. Advanced features of the AVL2 include wide area mapping down to the street level and the ability to identify individual drivers and driver territories.
A key component of the system is the companion Qube vehicle-mounted satellite tracking device, with an industrial-grade touch screen to withstand the harsh operating conditions typically found in construction vehicles, buses, and big rigs.
In addition to its Pleasanton and Illinois locations, Navman Wireless maintains facilities in Foothill Ranch, Calif.; Keele, England; Singapore; Auckland, New Zealand; and Sydney, Australia. In July 2007 Prairie Capital of Chicago supported the Navman management team's acquisition of the company from its publicly traded parent, Brunswick Corp. For more information, visit www.navmanwireless.com .
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