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Auto Trader launches new TV and online ad campaign

Auto Trader’s first national TV campaign for 18 months launched on Sky, ITV1, Channel 4 and online on Friday (7 September).

To take advantage of the expected uplift in traffic, Auto Trader has announced a stock uncapping offer. Dealers can add additional stock outside their normal contract ‘for free for the duration of the campaign’.

The new 40-second advert, part of a £15m marketing drive, will run on TV until the end of September and online until mid-October.

It will be aired on TV over 600 times, supported by ‘homepage takeovers’ on YouTube and Top Gear.

Nathan Coe, group director at Auto Trader, said: “Auto Trader’s return to TV screens will help to raise the profile of the new and used cars offered by our dealers.

“They should all take advantage of the stock uncapping offer as it is expected that there will be an additional 1.3m visits to the Auto Trader website during the TV campaign and nearly 32m people will be exposed to the campaign.” 

The company insisted the ad campaign had no connection to the announcement in August by News International it was launching a used car site. "The ad campaign has been planned for eight to 10 weeks," a spokesman said.

> The Auto Trader ad.

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  • JohnAllen3790 - 10/09/2012 17:56

    Simon Duke Published: 2 September 2012 :Guardian Newspaper THE owner of the Guardian and Observer newspapers has suffered a fresh blow after its last remaining cash cow, the Auto Trader used-car website, saw profits plunge by three-quarters last year. Pre-tax earnings at Trader Media Group (TMG), which owns the Auto Trader magazine and online service, fell to £22m in the 12 months to April, against £94m in the previous year when the figures were flattered by a one-off accounting gain, according to accounts filed at Companies House. Operating profits, which strip out one-off charges, fell by £2m to £106m as the firm, owned by Guardian Media Group (GMG) and Apax Partners, the private equity firm, warned that the economic downturn was taking its toll. “There is clear evidence of a recessionary effect in the used-car market,” said TMG, with growth “slowing down” in the second half of its fiscal year. That is a setback for GMG, whose financial future hinges on securing a money-spinning sale or stock market float for TMG in the coming years. Last year GMG crashed to a £75m pre-tax loss due to a £44m deficit at the Guardian and Observer. The newspaper group is slashing jobs and is expected to launch its first- ever round of compulsory redundancies later this year. TMG is credited with navigating the transition from print to digital more skilfully than many other publishers. However, it piled on an extra £150m of debt last year to finance a £210m dividend to GMG and Apax. Its net borrowings now stand at £637.1m. Its soaring overdraft could delay a sale or float of TMG, which is worth between £1billion and £1.5 billion. Bankers expect it to use its strong cashflow to whittle down the overdraft in the next two years, when GMG and Apax are expected to sell the business. GMG is a non-profit organisation controlled by the Scott Trust, whose mission is to safeguard the Guardian’s independence “in perpetuity”. The proceeds from a sale of TMG will be placed in an investment fund to support the newspapers. But analysts warn that should the slowdown at TMG persist, GMG will have missed its chance to bank the maximum windfall from its prized asset. Despite the falling profits, TMG awarded its chief executive an austerity-defying pay rise last year. John King took home £800,000 in salary, bonus and other perks — £100,000 more than the previous year. Ed Williams, who founded the Rightmove property website and is a non-executive director of TMG, has taken a £700,000 stake in the business. News Corp, the owner of The Sunday Times, is said to be planning to launch a website to compete with Auto Trader.

  • - 12/09/2012 07:47

    Just a small correction - John Allen3790 wrote: GMG is a non-profit organisation controlled by the Scott Trust, whose mission is to safeguard the Guardian’s independence “in perpetuity”. In fact The Scott Trust no longer exists, having been wound up in 2008 and replaced by a not-for-profit company, The Scott Trust Limited, with broadly the same objectives but an entirely different constitution.