Identifix Inc. has announced the appointment of Jeff Lagges to serve as Managing Director of the 28-year old company, following former president Jeff Sweet’s decision to retire.
“I appreciate the trust that the customers, employees and investors of Identifix placed in me over the last 21 years,” said Sweet. “The fact that we now serve nearly 55,000 customers who will use our product to fix 25 million vehicles could only have been achieved by the dedicated group of Identifix employees. Given Jeff Lagges’ deep experience in the industry, I know Identifix will continue to find even better ways to serve our customers.”
Prior to joining Identifix, Lagges was president of ALLDATA, starting in an entry-level position as editor in 1990. The company under his leadership went from ranking fourth in the market to first and expanded internationally. Lagges started his career in the automotive industry in 1980 when he spent a decade as a journeyman technician holding ASE and California Emissions certifications.
“Automotive is a part of my DNA and for the last 35 years it has provided me with an exciting and enriching career.” said Lagges. “Jeff Sweet has done a phenomenal job bringing Identifix to the forefront as the most specific and trusted source for diagnostics and repair, and I’m looking forward to building upon the company’s momentum and continuing to serve the needs of our valuable customers.”
Sweet was a member of Identifix’s original Board of Directors when founder Bill Sauer assumed majority ownership of the company from one of the original investors in 1992. According to his retirement release last year, Sauer knew he had to hire a strong CEO to lead the day-to-day operations.
“With the last names of Sweet and Sauer, we knew we had to be together,” said Sauer in the release.
Over the last two decades Identifix has become the largest source of diagnostic and repair information in North America, currently boasting 46 factory-trained ASE master carline specialists. It receives up to 20,000 calls a month on its repair hotline, which has taken over four million calls since its inception. An average of 20,000 shops are accessing data through Direct-Hit, Identifix’s online tool, at any given time. The company has undergone significant growth recently, recognizing its 50,000th Direct-Hit subscriber in July. Identifix celebrated 30,000 subscribers in 2011, increasing Direct-Hit’s subscriber base by 67% in four years.