CarsDirect.com, the US online seller, has abandoned its plans for a European operation headed by Kevin Gaskell, former BMW GB managing director.
Mr Gaskell, who dismissed industry speculation he was moving to Ford Premier Automotive Group, heads a new company which acquired the UK rights to CarsDirect's operating structure. He is negotiating with unnamed companies wanting to use their strong brands in motor retailing.
“I do not regret leaving BMW,” said Mr Gaskell. “CarsDirect has been a wonderful experience and a great learning curve. But in late summer I advised the US management that Europe would not support their model.”