Chesterfield Auto Parts owner veers into the software business

Troy Webber, proprietor of Yardsmart and Chesterfield Automobile Components, in front of a license plate assortment in his place of work at Chesterfield Car Components in Richmond. (Jack Jacobs picture)

Troy Webber now is offering more than just utilized automobile areas.

The proprietor of Chesterfield Automobile Areas not too long ago released Yardsmart, a program method intended to streamline the functions of self-services auto junkyards these types of as those run by his family’s prolonged-standing company in Richmond, Chesterfield and Prince George.

Motor vehicle junkyards characteristic acres of damaged-down autos that prospects can take a look at for precise parts to pull off automobiles and obtain, these types of as seats, dashboard items and doorways. Yardsmart is pitched as an all-in-1 alternative to handling the acquisition, management and sale of this kind of inventory.

The Yardsmart software permits end users to keep track of inventory, obtain and system automobiles, track scrap metallic product sales and deal with reporting to federal government organizations, amongst other functions.

Yardsmart is a substitute method for software package that Chesterfield Autos Sections developed for its personal use in the 1990s. Webber had sold a membership assistance to that program to a few other yards in excess of the years.

“As significantly back again as the late ’90s we had been designing our own software program,” Webber mentioned. “This is the second time we developed software program from the floor up for our use.”

Webber employed Henrico-based mostly Straightforward Thread to establish the platform. He estimated that additional than $1 million has been invested in the software’s development, which started in late 2019.

Yardsmart is a cloud-based mostly software program system designed for the administration of self-service car elements yards. (Photo courtesy of Yardsmart)

Though other related administration packages are offered, Webber reported he was encouraged to develop Yardsmart mainly because he could not obtain an existing product with all the characteristics he needed, this sort of as the capacity to cope with multiple areas.

Webber explained that Yardsmart’s position as a cloud-primarily based solution, which means it is accessible on products as lengthy as there is an world-wide-web connection, sets it apart.

“That’s a major distinction from us and other related merchandise. It’s just a site. You can get on the internet from a laptop computer, a desktop, even cellphones out in the industry,” he explained.

Webber explained it was widespread in the marketplace for junkyard operators to have a patchwork program of courses to deal with distinctive features of yard operations.

“(Junkyard operators will say), ‘We’re executing it with seven applications and two subscriptions.’ It is good to have it in a person package deal,” Webber said.

The cloud-primarily based method is marketed as a every month subscription. Webber stated pricing begins at $500 a thirty day period and can be tweaked primarily based on the number of yards a shopper operates.

Webber reported he had one particular consumer as of previously this 7 days, a Tennessee firm with a person yard. He mentioned he hopes to have 5 subscribed customers by the finish of the 12 months. Chesterfield Vehicle Elements also takes advantage of the plan at its 3 spots, and served as the tests grounds for Yardsmart.

Webber is the third-generation proprietor of Chesterfield Auto Sections. His grandfather started the business in 1947 when he acquired the automobile components lawn at 5111 Old Midlothian Turnpike in Richmond.

Webber purchased the organization from his father in 2008. Four many years later, Webber bought the company’s lawn at 12910 Genito Road in Chesterfield from a competitor and it reopened underneath the Chesterfield Car Sections banner in 2013. The company’s Prince George location opened in 1991.

Chesterfield Car Areas has about 1,800 autos on its three yards at any specified time. The enterprise has about 110 workforce and produced $18 million in profits in 2022, Webber reported.

Yardsmart shares some employees with Chesterfield Vehicle Parts further than its devoted programmer. Yardsmart also is expected to have ongoing support from Easy Thread.

Yardsmart was the winner of RVATech’s Innovation in Cloud Computing award in 2022 and Webber unveiled the level-of-sale and management computer software at a trade display in Orlando, Florida, final fall. He’s betting these facial area time will be the vital to the new product’s accomplishment.

“It’s these kinds of a new products, no a single has listened to of it so we can introduce it a single-on-a person. …It’s extra impactful to talk to the individual who not only produced the software program but who is somebody in the market,” Webber reported. “We truly feel the sector is completely ready for this style of product or service.”