Chevin: Improving a winning formula
23 January 2015
Chevin: A potted history
A management buyout in 1990 gave birth to Chevin, but the change in the role of the web at the beginning of the century really kick-started the firm. "In 2001 the internet was starting to change from being a shop window to an application platform," says Chevin managing director Ashley Sowerby. "We looked into the existing Roadbase product and whether we could enable it, but six weeks into the project we decided we were trying to shoehorn the wrong technology into the wrong platform."
Taking itself out of the market for 18 months, Chevin returned with Fleetwave. "Everyone else had a legacy product with a tiny bit of functionality for a web portal, which was a very clunky solution, but Fleetwave immediately enabled us to go into larger fleets and multi-sites," Sowerby explains. "Suddenly, we climbed the ladder of who we could sell to."
Chevin opened its US office in 2002, and the US and UK, which also includes Chevin's Middle Eastern operations, are closely matched in revenue terms. A third bash at Australia proved successful in 2009 with the establishment of Chevin Fleet Solutions Australia, rather than relying on distributors as had been the case with previous attempts, and Fleetwave 2 came along in 2010, described as a"foundation-level rewrite".
"Fleetwave developed a lot over the period, but at some point you need to flatten and rebuild, and that's what we did with Fleetwave 2," says Sowerby. "The performance leap was massive, with a lot more scalability."
In 2011, Chevin opened its European office in Brussels, and also has operations in various parts of Africa.