Named CEO of KAR in 2021, Peter Kelly’s focus—KAR’s purpose—is simple: “make wholesale easy so our customers can be more successful.” Leveraging his deep technology expertise, Kelly leads KAR’s strategy, planning and growth, overseeing the development and delivery of next-generation products, services and capabilities and ensuring KAR’s core businesses continue to innovate and evolve to meet the changing needs of customers. Kelly also serves on KAR’s board of directors.
Prior to assuming his current role, Kelly was named president of KAR in 2019. As president, Kelly oversaw all KAR business units and brands—including ADESA, AFC, BacklotCars and TradeRev—and was responsible for KAR’s digital platforms and solutions. He was also charged with strategic and operational oversight of the company’s data as a service, information technology and sales and marketing functions.
Kelly joined KAR in 2011 through the acquisition of OPENLANE, the world’s leading online auction platform supporting private-label upstream programs for more than 40 OEM and financial institution brands. As co-founder, president and chief executive officer of OPENLANE, Kelly led the company from startup to the scaleup of what is now the leading online wholesale auction platform in North America sustaining more than one million transactions per year.
Earlier in his career, Kelly spent eight years managing engineering, construction and procurement projects for Taylor Woodrow, a U.K.-based construction and development firm. Kelly holds an engineering degree from University College Dublin and an MBA from Stanford University.