WebBuy, which introduced one of the nation's first fully integrated car-buying applications to dealerships in 2014, has merged with Webgrain, the Billings-based app development company that helped launch the innovative digital-retailing solution.
In the last year, WebBuy has grown significantly in markets across the U.S. and now has a national network of participating dealerships. WebBuy Co-Founders Steve Zabawa and Tom Murray said it was time to take the app to the next level. The merger with Webgrain, which closed June 16, adds full-time development resources to the WebBuy team.
"By bringing in an in-house development team, WebBuy is effectively supercharging development efforts to maintain our position as the leader in the digital-retailing space, and allows us to support our growing client base," said Steve Dimock, WebBuy's Chief Technical Officer who was one of three partners at Webgrain.
Former partners Mike Ohman and Nick Britton were named WebBuy's director of technical operations and lead developer, respectively. All seven WebGrain employees have moved to WebBuy's offices on Billings' West End.
Dimock said while his teammates move ahead on exciting WebBuy projects, they are also ensuring a smooth transition for dozens of clients of Webgrain, which was founded in 2010 as an interactive web development and design company offering web design, database and application development, search engine optimization and secure hosting solutions.
Webgrain created the initial WebBuy prototype, and later developed the first commercial version of the app. Dimock acted as WebBuy's CTO when representing the product and in helping guide its evolution.
Zabawa, a principal at Rimrock Auto Group and a dealership owner for more than 30 years, said the merger will help WebBuy enhance its current app and develop new products.
"With the additional development resources, we will bring new WebBuy products and services to market sooner and continue to meet the growing demand for an easy, transparent way to buy a car online," Zabawa said.
In just a month since the move to WebBuy, Dimock said, "We have already seen a dramatic improvement in our ability to respond to support requests and development of new features just by being in the office and reducing communication times."
"Our goal is to create the most complete, stable digital-retailing platform on the market," Dimock said. "We are already providing one of the most flexible solutions available, and we are excited to use this merger as an opportunity to continue improving on our work.
"It has always been our objective to create a solution that appeals to dealerships, and we've done it. We have now accelerated our efforts to incorporate feedback received by dealers, our users, and internally."
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