New CMO appointment as Gumtree, Autotrader and CarsGuide integrate

Trio of executive appointments made by parent company as it works to integrate the three marketplaces operationally

A new chief marketing officer has become the latest in a trio of executive-level appointments made across Gumtree Australia, CarsGuide and Autotrader as parent company, Adevinta, works to better integrate the businesses operationally.

Manisha Seewal joins the group in October as group marketing chief, reporting into managing director, Mark Kehoe. She joins from Singapore-based automotive marketplace, Carro, where she spent three years as group CMO. Prior to this, Seewal worked as head of marketing for Tokio Marine Insurance Group, also based in Singapore. Her resume also includes marketing roles with Aviva, HSBC Insurance and Great Eastern Life.

Seewal will join an executive team that includes recently appointed chief product officer, Daniel Evans, plus director of commercial partnerships. Shannon Fitzpatrick. She takes up a group CMO role with the Gumtree, CarsGuide and Autotrader brands following the departure of former Gumtree head of marketing, Amanda Behre, in September.

Manisha SeewalCredit: Gumtree
Manisha Seewal

In a statement, Kehoe said the three key leadership appointments are about supporting a strategic evolution of the business. Gumtree, CarsGuide and Autotrader joined forces in June 2020 under the ownership of eBay Classifieds Group. The combo were then acquired by global online classifieds specialist, Adevinta, earlier this year.

“As we look to the future, we need the best in the industry to help drive our strategy and realise the potential of our integrated business. Manisha, Daniel and Shannon all have a key role to play in that evolution,” Kehoe said.

On the priority list is further integration of the businesses to realise synergies, while retaining distinct brand identity for each division. Identifying growth opportunities is also firmly on the agenda for the trio of leaders.

Kehoe said each team member offers domain expertise and will support the transformation to a single business across the three brands.

“Manisha offers highly relevant marketing experience in both horizontal and vertical classifieds businesses,” he continued. “Daniel comes with a deep knowledge of product development in the transactional and mobile-first realm. Shannon understands the role of data and how to connect with audiences through solutions that are client-centric.

“With oversight from our new leadership team, our brands will work closely to deliver results across every part of the business, from marketing and technology to media and beyond.”

Kehoe pointed to the recent integration of digital product development and adoption of motor solutions from CarsGuide and Autotrader into Gumtree as an example of how the combination is also paying dividends.

“Likewise, we’re also seeing terrific value in offering our motor dealers listings across all three sites allowing them to reach larger audiences,” he said.

“As the needs of our stakeholders continue to evolve, so does our strategy. Online classifieds are being led by consumers looking for a seamless process to buy and sell and also by advertisers seeking contextual solutions driven by data. Reinvigorating our leadership team means we’ll be able to focus on enhancing our combined business offering to support these needs while continuing to provide Australians with the things they already love about our platforms.”

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