The Silicon Review
Derive is empowering customers to take control of their vehicles
Derive Systems of Denver and Orlando impressed us with its cutting-edge engine calibration software, VQ Efficiency, for fleet managers and automotive enthusiasts. They are a unique company developing technology that helps improve engine efficiency and reduce carbon emission. Under seasoned CEO John Oechsle, the Global Environmental Fund, and other private equity players, Derive aims to improve performance and the environment.
The VQ platform’s core purpose is to deliver advanced mobility solutions to decrease carbon emissions from fleet vehicles. On average, Derive generates between 6% to 10% immediate fuel savings per vehicle, making vehicle fleets as environmentally friendly as possible.
Clients include national brands like Comcast, Danos, Eversource, Safelite, and many other service fleets with vehicles servicing customers across North America. Derive VQ allows a company to run their engines smarter by controlling idle rates and improves driver safety by capping vehicle speed and reducing distractions from smartphones, thus lowering the fuel consumption and risk. As America and the world seek to bring emissions lower and enhance vehicle performance, Derive Systems will serve as a bridge for future electric vehicle (EV) trucks and automotive power.
John Oechsle, CEO of Derive Systems, said: “Derive has always been focused on reducing emissions from fleet vehicles, and we continue to find new ways to optimize fuel efficiency and safety. We are very pleased to be acknowledged by Silicon Journal for our fast growth this year. As we see a renewed focus on climate change, Derive has the solution to reduce the carbon footprint of the current 153 million cars on the road today.”
Effectively managing a fleet of vehicles can be challenging with external factors like legislative changes, increased fuel costs, and market uncertainty. Most fleet managers aim to lower costs, increase productivity, manage the associated risk, improve efficiency, and comply with legislation.
Telematics has been a fleet management tool used for decades to collect data and track profitability, fuel efficiency, and vehicle health metrics. While telematics offers a wealth of data and knowledge, there are gaps in the existing technology that force fleet managers to rely on driver behavior rather than vehicle performance to enhance fleet operations.
Derive VQ recalibrates engines for better efficiency, provides enhanced insights with telematics for more significant savings, and shifts safety compliance from the driver to the vehicle. The VQ software adjusts several ECU parameters, including idle, shifting patterns, torque converter lockup, ignition timing, exhaust gas recirculation, maximum speed, etc. The result is much like adding an aftermarket EV button to a commercial fleet.
As an expert in custom vehicle calibrations, Derive Systems has calibrated more than 2 million vehicles to decrease fuel costs, increase fuel efficiency, and limit dangerous driver behavior. As a result, Derive Systems enables individuals and fleets to optimize their vehicles for improved performance, fuel efficiency, safety, and more.
A conversation with H. John Oechsle, CEO of Derive Systems
Q. How do companies benefit from implementing Derive’s VQ Efficiency software into their fleet?
Imagine reducing your fleet’s fuel consumption by more than 6%, eliminating thousands of pounds of CO2 and harmful carbon emissions while providing your company ROI within the first month of deployment. That’s what we do, and our solution is available today. Why wait until tomorrow if you can address these issues today. Our technology is an immediate bridge to enhanced fleet sustainability as we all work towards a more efficient fleet vehicle of tomorrow. Our customers get an immediate reduction in fuel consumption, lower carbon emissions, and increased safety for drivers.
Q. Tell us how commercial drivers can benefit from fleet management?
Derive VQ takes the pressure off the driver and allows fleet managers to manage the vehicle, not the driver. Our technology makes vehicles more efficient and provides parameters such as speed governing to keep the driver safe. As a result, fleet driving safety leads to less risk and reduced costs.
Q. Generally, vehicle fleets are managed by logistics companies. In such cases, how can you bridge the gap for different clients?
Each customer’s needs are different, but what remains the same is the constant effort to make a customer’s fleet as productive and profitable as possible.
Most fleets are full of customized items such as ladder racks, GPS systems, paint jobs, even streaming video. While all these elements are important, the most critical possible customization is often overlooked — the engine. Vehicle manufacturers strive to reach a balance of power, fuel economy, and driver comfort that fits a wide range of audiences. But often, these standard vehicle configurations don’t fully match the fleet managers’ intended use cases and are thus less efficient.
Calibrating your fleet vehicle’s engines to align with your company’s needs can deliver immediate fuel-cost savings, offer additional safety advantages, cut emissions, and improve the performance and productivity of your entire fleet. In one recent example, we saved the City of Orlando fleet over $82,000 per year in fuel and operations savings, reduced over 500,000 pounds of CO2 emissions in the city, and gave the locality the equivalent capacity of taking 250 of its vehicles off the road over three years.
Q. Tell us how Derive VQ software is installed?
VQ is a one-time installation via your OBD II port that can be completed in less than 30 minutes. We back up your original factory settings before the calibration is uploaded, and the modification of the ECU does not impact your OEM warranty. The VQ technology allows fleet managers to adjust key ECU parameters that reduce idle, optimize shifting patterns, torque converter lockup, ignition timing, exhaust gas recirculation, maximum speed (e.g., cap), and many others.
Q. What does the future hold for your company and its customers? Are exciting things on the way?
Our newest venture is Derive VQ Safety, which prohibits distracted driver behavior with smartphones and caps the vehicle’s allowable speed. We hope to help both the transportation industry and families with the distracted driver issue that claims so many lives, more than 3000 per year with 400,000 injuries reported according to the CDC.
The Leader at the Top of Derive
H. John Oechsle is the CEO of Derive Systems. John, a capital market veteran, has distinguished himself as a modest, disciplined, and demanding consumer advocate. With over 30 years of experience, John’s hands-on approach to executive leadership has led to many successful product lines in the technology and e-business market segments.
John’s immediate impact is evident in his early accomplishments at Derive, assembling the right leadership team to develop a focused technology roadmap for maximum growth while leaving the planet better than we found it. His vision is to provide customer’s the highest level of performance that is Clean Air compliant.
Before joining Derive, John spent more than seven years as the President and CEO of Swiftpage, a computer software company specializing in customizable CRM and Marketing Automation solutions that drive lower-cost customer acquisition and retention.
John has worked to advance Colorado’s tech ecosystem through talent advocacy, economic development, and community by serving in various organizations such as the Colorado Technology Association (CTA), Open World Learning, and a youth organization called Kidstek. He has an impressive list of awards, more recently named 10 Best CEOs of 2021 by Industry Era Magazine, The SaaS Report’s Top 50 CEOs list for 2018 and 2019, and the CEO Today USA Awards for 2018.