Brian Eaton, a former sales and marketing director at cable giant Telewest, has been poached by Sir Alan Sugar to oversee the launch and development of Amstrad’s new phone/fax/e-mail console, the em@iler.
Eaton was formerly marketing chief of General Cable, which Telewest bought for &£649m in 1998. He joins Amstrad as head of the new project, which was officially launched two weeks ago.
He will oversee Amserve, a separate division of Amstrad set up to manage and sell the em@iler, the company’s most high-profile product since it launched Amstrad PCs in the early Eighties.
Eaton will also manage and develop the database of customer information Sugar hopes to glean from registered users of the e-mail service.
Sugar intends to use the database information to sell advertising space on the em@iler’s four-colour screen. He expects the ads, which will remain on customers’ screens all day, to generate 50 per cent of the new product’s revenue.
Eaton left Telewest’s sales and marketing division in March. Before he joined General Cable, he worked in Mercury Communications’ central marketing department and, before that, in the mobile communications sector.
He says: “Amstrad is very charged up over this new product and that is what encouraged me to join. Amstrad was once a world-beater; we feel this will make us one again.”
He is in discussion with media buyers and direct mail order companies over developing advertising opportunities for the new product.