Chip Perry Set to Leave AutoTrader May 1st


Driving Sales - March 25, 2013

Hav­ing been the first employee at Auto­Trader, which now owns Kel­ley Blue Book, vAuto, Home­Net and Vin­So­lu­tions as well, Chip Perry will be missed

Find out more about the man behind Auto­Trader.

Chip Perry will be replaced by Sandy Schwartz as the head of Auto­Trader Group, effec­tive May 1. Schwartz will also retain his posi­tion as the leader of Man­heim, giv­ing him con­trol of all the Auto­mo­tive units within Cox Enter­prises. The offi­cial release was com­ple­men­tary of Perry, but one could write a book about what he has done build­ing and the Auto­Trader Group over the past 16 years.

Chip Perry was the first employee of, when he was asked to cre­ate the prod­uct in 1997. Until then, auto­mo­tive Inter­net was a lead gen­er­a­tion busi­ness, pio­neered by Auto­by­tel. Chip had the fore­sight to know that pen­e­tra­tion would be the key. The rela­tion­ship with Man­heim was lever­aged to quickly get thou­sands of vehi­cles up online. Under Chip’s lead­er­ship, never gave up its lead­er­ship role in this space.

In recent years, has bal­looned into Auto­Trader Group, with acqui­si­tions like vAuto, Vin­So­lu­tions, and Home­Net. Some deal­ers feel they pay too much for, but there is no deny­ing the major­ity of fran­chised deal­ers use the prod­uct. What­ever you feel about Auto­Trader Group and Chip Perry, if you met the man even once, you felt his energy and have a story to tell.