Carsales CIO gets a promotion

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Carsales CIO gets a promotion
Ajay Bhatia

CTO takes over vacant spot.

Carsales veteran chief information and product officer Ajay Bhatia has scored a promotion and will now manage the online classifieds' consumer business as its managing director.

A leadership reshuffle last week saw Bhatia ascend to the role and Carsales chief technology officer Jason Blackman take over the CIO position.

Bhatia has been the brains behind the Carsales technology business since 2008. He has overseen a shift to the public cloud that started with image serving and recently saw the business migrate its core website into AWS.

Bhatia was also responsible for introducing hackathons to Carsales - which have become a big and regular ideas generator for the organisation - as well as for the development of a custom search engine that saw him win Retail CIO of the year and sign up external customers including Pickles Auctions to the platform.

More recently he led the IT team through a rebuild of the core Carsales platform to a microservices architecture.

Bhatia's new role as head of consumer is largely commercial, but keeps some operational functions like data analytics, the project management office, corporate systems, data analytics, and artificial intelligence.

"So [I'm] not completely cut off [from tech]," Bhatia said.

"[But] I am keen to diversify my experience and wanted to build up on my commercial experience along with a role that allows me to directly grow our business to new heights."

Now filling his CIO shoes is Jason Blackman, the company's CTO since August 2015 and its head of retail systems for over three years before that.

"During this time [Blackman] has spent his time making me look good and now it's his time to shine," Bhatia said.

"Jason's key challenge in the new role will be to continue to scale [Carsales] to a truly global business."

The CTO role will likely not be replaced, Bhatia said, but noted this could change down the track.

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