Chicago—December 5, 2006—Cars.com announced today that executive site producer Bill Swislow has been promoted to the newly created role of senior vice president for product. A nine-year Cars.com veteran, Swislow will lead the site's product development strategy, bringing new features and products to market to further improve consumer experience and advertising effectiveness. The company also announced the addition of Dennis Galbraith as vice president for dealer product and operations. Galbraith, the former executive director of automotive digital marketing at J.D. Power and Associates and co-founder of the Automotive Internet Roundtable, will lead the site's dealer product initiatives.
The announcement comes as Cars.com prepares for its most aggressive product development schedule in site history. "In 2007, Cars.com will more than double its product development budget, making a multi-million dollar investment into new consumer site functionality and further enhancement of our dealer products," said Mitch Golub, Cars.com president. "In the coming year, we'll reinvent the online automotive shopping experience, giving car buyers more ways to shop than ever before, more content to support their buying decisions and more ways to connect with a dealer who has the car they are looking to buy."
"Bill, a leader at the forefront of online consumer experience, and Dennis, one of the automotive sector's leading analysts, bring an unmatched strength to our product leadership team," Golub said. "Their combined knowledge and their respective expertise in online consumer behavior and automotive shopping position Cars.com to lead the category in site innovation."
Swislow began his career with Cars.com in July 1997, working to develop and launch the original Cars.com site. As vice president and executive site producer, Swislow has been at the helm of the site's many iterations and improvements, including the deployment of telephone numbers as the key dealer advertising format. Most recently, Swislow and his team overhauled the site's listing model to bring comprehensive research functionality directly into the vehicle listings environment. The enhanced design has helped consumers streamline their shopping process and has helped advertisers improve lead conversion.
Under Swislow's leadership, Cars.com has consistently ranked as a top automotive website, reaching more than 8 million unique visitors each month. The site has received numerous distinctions, including the Webby People's Choice Award. An expert in customer experience management, Swislow is an active member of the Customer Experience Councils.
Galbraith comes to Cars.com from J.D. Power and Associates, where he served as executive director of automotive digital marketing. Previously, he led Dennis Galbraith Marketing Services, a Southern California-based independent marketing agency. As a consultant, Dennis worked closely with many of the region's largest automotive and financial businesses, facilitating market research and creating cost-effective marketing plans.
"Cars.com impresses me with its commitment to continually re-evaluate its products against an evolving marketplace and changing customer requirements," Galbraith said. "I look forward to helping develop a new generation of products dealers can use to cost-effectively merchandise their vehicles online, drive more traffic to their stores and close more sales."
Partnered with more than 200 leading metro newspapers, television stations and their websites, Cars.com is the most comprehensive destination for those looking to buy or sell a new or used car. The site lists more than 2 million vehicles from 13,000 dealer customers, classified advertisers and private parties to offer consumers the best selection of new and used cars online, as well as the content, tools and advice to support their shopping experience. Recently selected by Forbes.com as a Best of the Web site for car shopping, Cars.com combines powerful inventory search tools and new-car configuration with pricing information, photo galleries, buying guides, side-by-side comparison tools, original editorial content and reviews to help millions of car shoppers connect with sellers each month.
Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including Belo (NYSE: BLC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB) and The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).
Editor's Note: Photographs of Bill Swislow and Dennis Galbraith are available on request.