August 04, 2010 11:00 ET
AutoReturn Awarded Contract Renewal by City of San Francisco
Leading Technology-Enabled Towing Management and Logistics Company Transforms Historically Difficult Towing Operation Into Efficient and Professional Service
SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - August 4, 2010) - AutoReturn, the leader in the new field of towing management and logistics, announced today that its five-year contract extension for managing the municipal towing operations has been approved by the City of San Francisco.
Citing a night and day change, Supervisors last week approved a new contract for AutoReturn after crediting the company with transforming a historically difficult process into an efficient and professional service that has improved every facet of the city's towing operations.
"San Francisco's trusted relationship with AutoReturn stands as a proven model for how cities around the country can improve community services and save money," said City Supervisor Bevan Dufty. "Through the City's experience with AutoReturn, we've seen first-hand the success that comes from applying innovative new private-sector approaches to solve long-standing municipal challenges."
AutoReturn has improved towing in the following ways:
Decreased customer complaints from 20 to 30 per month to less than 4 per year
Significantly reduced tow response times using many of the same local tow operators
Decreased the City's cost of overseeing this important city service, while increasing oversight and control
AutoReturn has addressed the common set of problems that have historically plagued municipal towing -- long towing wait times, vehicle damage, property loss, accounting issues, lost city revenue, little or no transparency, and poor customer service. The company's success can be attributed to its heavy investment in technology and its decision to work with local tow operators to provide this important city service. In the past, towing companies have used paper-based processes to dispatch tow trucks and keep records, leading to errors and non-transparent business practices. Today AutoReturn's world-class technology platform manages the 60,000-plus vehicles towed yearly in San Francisco. To dispatch tow trucks, proprietary GPS-enabled technology finds the closest available tow truck operator and cuts response times dramatically. Once vehicles are towed, their information is stored as a digital record, providing an easy way to access, sift, and analyze data. Customers can locate vehicles online and through an automated phone system, or speak with a trained customer service representative 24x7. Municipalities benefit by reducing administration costs while increasing oversight and control.
"We long ago recognized the inefficiencies and need for fundamental change in the municipal towing industry, and our track record of success with the City of San Francisco validates our approach," said John Wicker, founder and Chief Executive Officer of AutoReturn. "Our collaboration with San Francisco is setting a new standard for the entire industry."
This year, AutoReturn expanded its towing management services to the County of Baltimore and the City of San Diego and is in active discussions with numerous other U.S. cities nationwide.
AutoReturn is the leader in municipal towing management and logistics solutions, partnering with municipalities and existing local tow operators to help achieve efficiency, superior service, and increased cost recovery. AutoReturn was formed in 2002 to revolutionize the municipal towing industry. Recognizing the presence of a common set of problems in municipal towing across the country, AutoReturn realized that a new type of company was required, a technology-enabled municipal towing management and logistics company. AutoReturn has made sizable investments in technology, repeatable processes, training programs and other infrastructure.