Reynolds and Reynolds
Innovation has been a hallmark of both The Reynolds and Reynolds Company and Universal Computer Systems, Inc. (UCS). Reynolds has evolved from a business forms manufacturer into one of the world's leading information management companies serving the automotive retailing industry. UCS has grown from a regional data processing service to a complete dealer services provider, often being the first to introduce many of the dealership software applications available today. Click here for an overview timeline.

Late 19th Century
1866 - Gardner & Reynolds was founded in Dayton, Ohio, by Lucius D. Reynolds and his brother-in-law, James R. Gardner.

1867 - The firm became Reynolds & Reynolds when Gardner sold his share of the company to Ira Reynolds, Lucius Reynolds' father.

1869 - Ira Reynolds invented and patented a removable and reusable hard cover for duplicating sales books that utilized an insertable carbon leaf.

1889 - The firm was incorporated as The Reynolds and Reynolds Company.

Early 20th Century
1927 - The company began producing standard business forms and paper-based accounting systems for the nation’s Chevrolet dealers.

1939 - The Richard Hallam Grant family acquired controlling interest in the firm.

The 1960s and 1970s
1960 - Reynolds entered the electronic data processing (EDP) field when it purchased Controlomat. The company spends two years pioneering a new system of computerized accounting, thus becoming the first to offer computer services to auto dealers.
1961 - Reynolds and Reynolds stock is first sold to the public.

1963 - The firm moves into the Canadian market by purchasing the Automotive division of Windsor Office Supply at Windsor, Ontario.

1968 - Reynolds enters the data transmission field.

1970 – Universal Computer Systems (UCS) is formed as a regional data processing service bureau, providing local dealerships with weekly reports of their parts inventory.

1971 – Reynolds announces a service called Vital Information Promptly (VIP), which was later renamed Vital Information for Management (VIM). This accounting service collected data online and was the firm's first EDP system with online capability.

1974 – Reynolds markets VIM II.

1976 – UCS moves to a new location at 3724 Dacoma in Houston. The first VIM III system was installed.

1977 – UCS develops vehicle service and service department scheduling systems.

1978 – UCS serves as a third party broker for automotive forms.

The 1980s
1981 - Reyna Financial Corporation is created to assist customers in purchasing and leasing computers, hardware and software.

1982 - A major new family of turnkey, in-house computer systems from Reynolds called VIM/NET was announced for auto dealers and similar markets. UCS sold its first in-dealership computer system and began to offer electronic data conversion from the prior system to the UCS system.

1983 – Reynolds markets to auto dealers in Canada, Australia, France, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. UCS offers instant update cash receipts software.

1984 – UCS offers 38,000 baud terminals and online purchase order software.

1985 – UCS introduces sales prospect control software.

1986 – UCS offers fixed assets software and integrated telephone cost control software.

1987 - Reynolds introduces the new ERA® family of integrated computer systems for auto dealers. UCS introduces general manager software and context-specific help windows.

1988 - Reynolds achieves the Fortune 500. UCS provides instant user-defined inquiry screens and instant daily operating control reports. UCS also begins to manufacture its own forms.

1989 – UCS launches payroll software with instant check feature and time clock software.

The 1990s
1990 – UCS opens their headquarters in Houston, Texas. UCS also introduces a number of innovations, including software for customer satisfaction, human resource management, computer assisted instruction and integrated vehicle bar code inventory.
1991 - Reynolds opens what later becomes the Technical Assistance Center (TAC), to provide software and hardware support.
1992 – UCS purchases Ford Dealer Computer Services (FDCS) and introduces document retrieval and electronic mail software. UCS installs its first system in the United Kingdom. UCS launches an incentive control system in the U.S.

1993 – UCS installs its first system in Mexico and offers electronic forms software in the U.S.

1994 - Reynolds purchases Law Printing Company, Inc., to print legal documents for automotive dealers. UCS introduces service advisor daily work plan and purchase requisition control software.

1995 – UCS achieves milestone of single client computer system with over 1,000 users. UCS introduces the POWER workstation (client/server). UCS begins to offer dealer communications for multi-franchise dealerships and electronic cash register software.

1996 – UCS is the first provider of integrated Ford CREDITNET II software and offers integrated service pricing guide for dealerships.

1997 - Reynolds breaks ground on the first phase of its headquarters campus at Miami Valley Research Park in Dayton, Ohio. UCS launches software for adding aftermarkets/chargebacks to closed deals.

1998 – UCS introduces image-based document retrieval software.

1999 - Reynolds forms the eBusiness Group, a team dedicated to focus on leveraging the Internet to enhance Reynolds’ position in the market. Reynolds creates a new electronic Customer Relationship Management group to deliver technology and Internet-enabled customer marketing solutions. UCS offers real-time Internet to DMS integration.

The 21st Century
2000 – UCS announces its Third Party Interface Program and Application Service Provider (ASP) solution.

2001 - Reynolds introduces ReySource™ that allows automotive retailers to order forms, supplies and equipment over the Internet. ReySource is recommended to its members by both the Ford Motor Minority Dealers and General Motors Minority Dealers Associations. UCS offers integrated mass marketing via letters and email.

2002 –Reynolds opens Research Park, Phase 2. UCS acquires Kalamazoo Computer Group, LLC, a European dealer services provider. UCS begins to offer a completely integrated CRM solution and launches ‘Net Classes to provide dealer training over the Internet.

2003 - Reynolds expands its Web solutions market share with the acquisition of Third Coast Media. Reynolds installs its 10,000th ERA dealer management system. Reynolds opens its Courthouse Square facility and breaks ground on Research Park, Phase 3.

2004 - Reynolds introduces WebMakerX and the ERA XT solution. Reynolds launches RU Online, a Web-based learning management system. UCS releases, the industry’s first Internet executive reporting application. As part of its existing Internet Business Connection solution, UCS launches the Internet Parts Order application, which allows consumers to order parts directly from the dealership’s Web site.

2005 – UCS announces that the majority of its customers are utilizing their LAN-based graphical user interface (GUI) software applications.

2006 –UCS releases the 23.x release for the POWER Workstation, its most comprehensive software update ever provided. Reynolds and UCS merge to form the world’s pre-eminent dealer services provider. The private company operates under the name The Reynolds and Reynolds Company and markets its products and services under the Reynolds brand. Reynolds continues to have its headquarters and principal operations in Dayton, Ohio, while retaining the former UCS offices in Houston and College Station, Texas.

2007 - For the fourth consecutive year, Reynolds is recognized by Training magazine as one of the Top 125 companies that delivered exemplary training for its associates. For the third consecutive year, Reynolds receives Platinum Awards in the 2007 Dealers' Choice Awards from Auto Dealer Monthly. The awards are for achievement in the Customer Relationship Management category and the Data Management System category. The Reynolds Certified Interface program surpasses 100 partners.