- LineOne, the United News & Media and BT-owned online service provider, has appointed a new managing director and commercial director in the same week as striking a new partnership with the world's largest internet-based new and used car buying service, Autobytel.
Ajay Chowdhury, formerly managing director of United Interactive, and Rene Moolenaar, United's commercial director, will join LineOne in identical roles and will be responsible for developing the service provider's businesses, which includes the new deal with Autobytel.
The agreement with Autobytel will see branded search boxes in the LineOne motoring section giving LineOne's members instant access to a searchable database of thousands of new and used cars from Autobytel.
Launched in the US in 1995, Autobytel.com is now the market leading American online new and used car buying service. Sales are currently running at around 30,000 vehicles a month with total sales to date worth over US$500 million dollars. It launches in the UK at the end of this week.
Chowdhury was responsible for starting and developing the new media division of United News & Media in 1994 and for United's involvement with LineOne. Before joining United, he was a manager at Bain & Company, the international management consultants.
Moolenaar was commercial director at United for over two years during which he was responsible for growing its games, multimedia and educational businesses worldwide. Prior to this, he was head of marketing at Philips Media.
Kevin Turnbull, chief executive officer of Autobytel said: "Confirming a deal with LineOne is a key step for us in launching Autobytel in the UK. LineOne shares our commitment to meeting our customers' needs and providing the highest quality service."