Haymarket creates special division for a new auto site

06 Apr 2017

U.K. publisher Haymarket Media Group (HMG) will spend £50 million ($62.4 million U.S.) on a new auto site, which will combine the content and services of three of HMG’s many automotive sites, namely new- and used-auto site PistonHeads.com, auto-review site AutoCar.co.uk, and auto-buying assistant WhatCar.com.

On PistonHeads, users may list their used autos for £11.99 ($15 U.S.) per auto per month.

The new auto platform will be the baby of a newly created division, called Haymarket Automotive. The new division will move into an office close to HMG’s head office in the west of London, and will eventually have a staff of 240 people, the company said (here).

Rachael Prasher, managing director of the new consumer division Haymarket Automotive of Haymarket Media Group (photo from her LinkedIn page with thanks)

Other automotive sites in the HMG portfolio include, classic-autos classifieds ClassicAndSportsCar.com, a b-to-b trade magazine in India called AutoCarProfessional, motorhome site PracticalMotorhome.com and b-to-b auto magazine Catmag.co.uk.

Kevin Costello, chief executive of HMG, said of the move: “This new division represents the single largest organic investment in our company’s history, reflecting the exciting growth prospects for media content and services for new and used cars.”

He added: “We will offer even more valuable content, price comparison and dealer information in (the new) automotive media segment.”

Haymarket Automotive plans to invest in content, data and transaction information for the used- and new-auto market in the U.K. – a retail market that Haymarket claims is worth about £85 billion ($106 billion U.S.) per year. The expansion is expected to create up to 100 new jobs.

The three sites to be moved in under the wing of Haymarket Automotive currently draw 5.2 million unique users per month between them. “The single digital platform (will) enable car buyers and sellers to interact, use data and consume content produced by all the brands of Haymarket Automotive,” the company said.

HMG predicted revenue of the new division to increase four-fold within a few years under a new management team. Rachael Prasher (photo), ex-automotive group brand director at Haymarket, will slide into the driving seat of the new division as managing director.

Her executive team will include Paul Shoesmith (as commercial director), Jim Holder (as editorial director), Richard Harding (as digital director) and Mark Hodson (as marketing and audience director).

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Sarah Wray