AOL's Hale to join sat-nav supplier Trafficmaster

AOL UK senior comms manager Philip Hale is to join Trafficmaster, the traffic data and sat-nav group, in the new role of head of PR.

Hale, a former senior PR manager at the RAC, will start at Bedfordshire-based Trafficmaster next month.

His appointment comes as the company plans its first agency-led consumer campaign. Citigate Dewe Rogerson's consumer arm has bagged the account after a four-way pitch.

The agency has been briefed to focus on building awareness of the company's traffic information service and its Smartnav system.

Financial Dynamics continues to handle the firm's financial PR.

Earlier this month, Trafficmaster signed a deal with Norwich Union to supply 35,000 of its sat-nav units. US truck-hire firm Ryder has also ordered 5,000 fleet-tracking units.

Trafficmaster posted profits of £1.9m for the first half of this year.

Hale leaves AOL after less than a year (PRWeek, 26 Jan) as the internet service provider sets about restructuring its business. It is currently selling its ‘narrow' and broadband-access interests in Europe.

‘AOL is set to become a very different business across Europe, more akin to Yahoo! or Google eventually, and we won't be looking for a replacement until the sale and restructure are complete,' said AOL comms director Jonathan Lambeth.

This month the Time-Warner-owned business sold its German internet access business to Telecom Italia for around £463m.

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