A former BMW and Porsche executive has been named to lead the European expansion of U.S. online vehicle-buying service CarsDirect.com.
The Los Angeles company has appointed Kevin Gaskell chief executive, Europe. Gaskell, who has resigned from his post as managing director of BMW Great Britain Ltd., starts his new job March 1.
Gaskell, 41, will be responsible for establishing CarsDirect.com's business in Europe. He will be based in the United Kingdom. 'Working with CarsDirect.com's management team, it is my intention to mirror the company's achievements in the U.S.A.,' Gaskell said.
In the United States, CarsDirect.com shoppers can research, price, customize, order and finance a new car or truck over the Web.
Online buyers can choose from 2,500 makes and models by every major manufacturer. More than 2,000 franchised dealers are a part of CarsDirect.com's Priority Dealer Network in the United States.
'CarsDirect.com will present an extraordinary opportunity for car buyers throughout Europe to take control of the purchasing process,' Gaskell said.
He had been managing director of BMW in Great Britain since 1996. Gaskell was responsible for all sales and distribution, and he presided over a 25 percent increase in sales during his three-year term. Gaskell also oversaw the development of an integrated Internet-based distribution strategy. 'My time at BMW was both rewarding and stimulating,' he said.
Gaskell started his professional career as a civil engineer at R.M. Douglas Construction. He later worked in the chemical industry as an accountant at Dow Corning Ltd.
Before joining BMW, Gaskell was managing director of Porsche Cars Great Britain Ltd.
'Kevin is recognized as one of the U.K.'s most talented managers,' said Bob Brisco, chief executive of CarsDirect.com. 'We are delighted he will be leading our expansion into Europe.'