AutoNation to buy leads from CarPoint
LAS VEGAS - AutoNation Inc. on Friday, Feb. 2, announced a three-year partnership with MSN CarPoint under which AutoNation will buy Internet sales leads for AutoNation dealerships and for dealerships affiliated with AutoNation's own online buying service, AutoVantage.
The AutoNation-CarPoint partnership is not exclusive. AutoNation will continue to get referrals from America Online, for example, and CarPoint has several other automotive partners.
AutoNation is paying CarPoint a fixed fee, plus an additional amount that increases with the volume of referrals, AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson said.
Microsoft Corp., of Redmond, Wash., owns a majority stake in CarPoint. Ford Motor Co. owns a minority share.
Valeo to cut 1,000 U.S. jobs
Valeo SA is slashing 1,000 jobs at its North American operations. Some of the cuts already have been made. The action is in addition to job reductions the French supplier made in late 2000.
Some job cuts are permanent, while others may be temporary, a Valeo spokeswoman said.
The cuts stem from continued volatility and declines in automaker production; General Motors and DaimlerChrysler are the company's largest North American customers.
Valeo is negotiating with labor officials at its unionized plants about early retirement or buyout packages to temper the effects of the cutbacks.
A likely target is the company's largest North American plant, a Rochester, N.Y., wiper facility employing nearly 3,000 workers. A climate-control plant in Arcola, Ill., also will close by late April, putting 78 employees out of work.
The cuts come on the heels of a year in which Valeo reported an 18 percent gain in sales but a 29 percent drop in net income.
GM vet will recruit women dealers
DETROIT - General Motors this week will announce that Pat Roberts is its first head of women's retail initiatives. In her new role, Roberts will recruit females to become GM dealers, train them in the dealerships and continue to mentor them. 'Now we'll have daughters and sisters and wives as dealers,' she said. 'Before it was always sons and brothers.'
Roberts, a 34-year GM veteran, was a trailblazer herself as a woman assigned to field sales in the early 1970s. Since October 1999, she has been GM's first regional diversity marketing manager.
To replace her in the interim, David Fitzwater will oversee Asian marketing and Bill Beasley will pick up Hispanic marketing on top of their regular regional marketing duties on the West Coast.