2008-2009

Trustee, Alumnus Named CEO of Leading Online Auto Auction Company

WPI Trustee Daniel Farrar ’84 has been named CEO of OPENLANE Inc., a leading online auction company in North America for automotive dealers to buy and sell wholesale vehicles.

Farrar brings to OPENLANE more than 20 years of proven operational experience growing and leading multinational organizations, with special expertise in the automotive sector. Most recently he was a general partner with Morgenthaler Partners (leveraged buyout team), a private equity firm based in Boston. Prior to that, he was president and CEO of GE Fleet Services, Europe, a $5 billion business unit of GE covering 27 countries. He spent more than 16 years at GE in many executive positions, including GE Fleet Services’ senior vice president of North American operations and managing director and group general manager of operations in the United Kingdom and Ireland. He has also held executive management positions in GE’s consumer electronics and corporate business development divisions.

OPENLANE conducts online automotive auctions using a proprietary software that allows wholesalers and dealers to buy and sell used vehicles, as an alternative to a physical auction. OPENLANE also offers a suite of other online services and can handle its customers’ transactions from start to finish. In January 2009, OPENLANE had a record-breaking month, selling more units than in any previous month in the company’s 10-year history.

"OPENLANE’s value proposition is incredibly clear and designed to deliver greater efficiencies and tremendous cost, time, and market savings to all of its customers," says Farrar. "Both automotive consignors and dealers have embraced OPENLANE over the past 10 years, and the pace is accelerating—due to the shorter sales cycles, reduced cost of capital, environmentally friendly practices, and overall savings OPENLANE brings to today’s market."

Farrar received a BS in mechanical engineering at WPI and later earned an MBA at Harvard Business School. He has been a board member of several multi-national corporations, including GE Capital Services Corp., Aegis Group, ABRA Auto, GELCO Corp., and Morgenthaler portfolio companies Extrusion Technologies, Formed Fiber Technologies, Mark Andy International, and Precision Parts International. He served as chairman of the board for GE Capital Bilfinans (Sweden), Drive Diagnostics (Israel), and Comm Works (USA). In addition to serving on the WPI Board of Trustees, Farrar is a member of the Board of Overseers at the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, Mass.

February 26, 2009

 
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