PRA Location Services is expected to quadruple the number of license-plate recognition camera systems it has in the field following an announcement this week that it has partnered withPlateSmart to offer a new software-based camera system to the repossession industry.
For PlateSmart, this marks the first time the company has entered into the repossession space.
What separates the PlateSmart system from other LPR systems is that it is built to run on any camera system. Agents will not need to purchase specific hardware in order to run the PlateSmart technology. Being hardware-agnostic also means that the PlateSmart LPR system is significantly cheaper than other LPR systems in the market, said John Chigos, the chief executive of PlateSmart.
The PlateSmart technology goes beyond what most other LPR cameras can do, too, said Chigos and John Fountaine, a vice president at PRA Location Services. PlateSmart’s technology can determine the color of a vehicle as well as the make and model while it is scanning license plates, Fountaine said.
Fountains said that agents currently using PRA LS’s camera systems will not need to make any significant changes to their set-ups.
“Our agent-partners will not feel a change,” Fountaine said. “This partnership is designed to make our systems more robust.”
The number of agents using PRA’s camera systems has quadrupled during the past 18 months and the company is projecting another quadrupling in the next year-and-a-half thanks to this partnership, Fountaine said.
PlateSmart also has third-party integrations that will allow agents to add Amber Alert suspects and other hot lists to their databases, increasing their returns on investment, Chigos said.
“Our technology goes beyond, ‘Go out and find this vehicle,’ ” Chigos said. “We’ve been interested in the recovery space for quite some time and have been looking for the right partner. We knew we had a great solution. We also knew we didn’t know the market well enough to do it on our own. We’re proud to be associated with PRA.”
The new systems are expected to begin rolling out some time this fall, Fountaine said.