NASTF Information Requests

Tracking: 314 Status: Closed - Request Invalid
State: IL Name: Mike
Category of Request: Manufacturer: GM

Have you checked the OEM website?
Description of Repair unable to perform
Unable to make a fully functional scantool without GM datastream information
Description of Information not available
It is known as GM Datastream info
Description of steps taken to obtain information (help/contact function on website, websites, etc.)
It is my opinion that the process and the price to license the GM Datastream information to make a functional scantool that covers General Motors vehicles is prohibitive to smaller companies and individuals. This is especially for ones that wish to focus on just the GM make and not develop an all makes scanner. I will try and list some points that support my position. I contacted Etool and talked to Charlie Gorman about licensing data to make scantools. He informed me that for the most part Etool handles the dissemination of the information by allowing a party to join Etool at a cost of $5000 a year and then an extra $2500 to access the scantool data. This process would cover a good number of OE Manufacturers although some have other extra requirements. For the most part I believe this is a good system although I have yet to partake in it. One reason would be is that I was informed that the manufacturer, General Motors, does not allow Etool to have access to it's info. Instead one must contact a specific employee of SPX, who by the way is a member of ETool to get the info. I contacted the person at SPX which I felt was odd considering they are the parent company of OTC, about licensing the information. I will just say that OTC is probably one of the largest scantool makers and also would be a direct competitor for the product I want to make. Not that my scanner would be any competition for them, I just feel I should not have to let them know what my plans are as they do not discuss theirs with me. I was informed that GM was going to want not the $55,000 per year listed on Etools website but a sum that could possibly be $300,000 (he was not sure as each case has to be brought to GM's attention first) which was because companies like OTC and SNAP ON have been licensing the data for a number of years and it would not be "right" to give me the data at one years licensing fee that they have been paying for, over the last ten years. So I am wondering what will it be in another ten years $600,000? The SPX/OTC rep advised me to put together a letter of intent that he would approach GM with. Without having the resources of the large companies like OTC, SNAP ON, and Bosch which already have a huge grip on the scantool market and have ties to the OE's already I came to the conclusion that I must approach this from a different angle. I put together my intention letter but in it I decided to Make an offer to GM first. It was pretty basic in that I offered to pay them on a per scantool sold basis. I offered to pay them $50 for each scantool I sold with a minimum of 100. This would be an amount of at least $5000. I figure that with the amount of scanners sold by the other companies I was actually paying a much higher rate than the other companies on a per scanner basis. I want to make a note here that the larger companies which bundle all the makes into one scanner can afford to pay GM's fee because they can average their info costs down with the addition of other makes. I do not wish to take this approach though because I wish to concentrate on making a really good scanner for 1 make and not one that does an OK job on many. In addition to averaging their costs down they also can charge more for an all make scanner than a single make. I started this proocess on 3/24/10. I received a reply from GM through SPX on 4/26/10 stating that they would let me license the data at a reduced rate. The amount was still 5 times what it would cost me to get the data from a lot of other manufacturers through Etool and out of a range that would allow me to make a product without incurring a loss. A counter offer was made along with some stated concerns I had. Below is what they are. ********** Unfortunately it would not be a good business decision for us to license the data at that price. We would not be profitable. 1. Other companies bundle software from other manufacturers together which helps offset the very hig
Other Comments or Concerns
Mary Hutchinson - 6/29/2010
Request involves pricing for licensing of GM data, and is therefore an area that NASTF is unable to address. GM personnel responded as follows: We have been in communication with Mr. Mueller concerning his desire for a datastream license agreement since late April 2010. It is not a matter of information's availability as we currently have several datastream licensees. Mr. Mueller's issue is related to the price of the license agreement which we feel is fair and reasonable for the amount of intellectual property being licensed.