DATAFIRST designs and deploys enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions for car dealers. For lead generation, the company relied on a once yearly road show and traditional direct mail campaigns sent to lists exported from its accounting system. To boost sales, DATAFIRST established three objectives: acquire new customers and increase market share, increase upselling to current customers, and launch value added SaaS products such as dealer CRM and branded websites. To achieve this, the company knew it needed a CRM system.


In addition to Sugar, DATAFIRST considered Salesforce, Sage CRM, and the CRM module of its Exact accounting system. The company chose Sugar for its feature set, ease of implementation, and the option to deploy either on premise or in the cloud. The company also engaged Sugar gold-level partner Synolia. Synolia integrated Sugar with Exact and the company’s website, made additional customizations, and trained the DATAFIRST sales force.


  • Coordinates all sales and marketing activities for DATAFIRST
  • Supports email campaigns and a monthly newsletter to approximately 5,000 recipients
  • Enables sales reps to see company products individual dealers own
  • Increases upsell opportunities
  • Improved lead generation 200 percent in only five months
  • Reduced upsell sales from twelve months to four

DATAFIRST has been developing and deploying innovative management solutions designed for automobile dealers since 1985. Its specialists are domain experts with in-depth knowledge of the dealer’s business activity, including how to incorporate its work patterns in our solutions.

Business Benefits

A leading management solution developer for automobile dealers, DATAFIRST chose Sugar and Sugar Gold Partner Synolia to help it grow market share, increase upsell opportunities, and develop new SaaS applications for its product portfolio. With Sugar, DATAFIRST cut its typical sales cycle from twelve months to four, increased lead generation by 200 percent in only five months, and closed a major upsell deal with 80 percent of its Ford dealer customer base.

Sugar now manages the sales and marketing activities for DATAFIRST, including email campaigns and a monthly newsletter that reaches approximately 5,000 recipients. With Sugar, DATAFIRST has completely updated its customer database, which enables sales reps to see the company products individual dealers own. In one case, this information revealed a major upsell opportunity within its Ford customer base. “In only four months—instead of the typical twelve—we were able to sell our automotive dealer CRM system to 80 percent of our Ford dealer customers,” notes Clemendot. “Without Sugar, and the campaigns and telesales it supports, this would never have been possible.” Sugar also dramatically increased lead generation—producing 428 leads in only five months compared to 150 in the prior year—a 200 percent increase.

Clemendot is enthusiastic about the future of Sugar with DATAFIRST and credits Synolia for its early success. “Synolia has real experience with CRM, not just with Sugar but in the way CRM needs to be implemented inside an organization,” concludes Clemendot. “They have great skills and were always responsive. It would be very difficult to be without CRM now. It’s in the genes of our company.”


  • Integrated Sugar with Exact and the company’s website
  • Made additional customizations
  • Trained the DATAFIRST sales force
Industry Automotive, Software, Technology
Location Lyon, France
Sugar Partner

Synolia helps companies deliver a superior customer experiences thanks to an extensive platform of services and solutions. //