Technology Positions for More Growth as an Online Resource for Ops and Consumers

Posted on April 1, 2008
Todd Belfer is the founder of RA Sushi, a successful Japanese restaurant chain owned by Benihana.
Todd Belfer is the founder of RA Sushi, a successful Japanese restaurant chain owned by Benihana.

It’s often hard to believe there was once life before the Internet. As little as 10 years ago, online advertising was unheard of. That’s one of the reasons why, the first online limousine trading post for consumers and limousine operators, has become an innovative tool for the industry.



“Since 1998, has become a pioneer in the lead generation industry as a premier provider of qualified leads for licensed limousine operators,” the company says. It is best known for breaking new ground in lead generation for the luxury ground transportation market.


“The website receives approximately 12,000 users per day in the off season and 20,000 users in peak season,” the company says. Why? entered the market before advertising for transportation services made it to a web forum and has emerged an online leader. “This was a time when online advertising was out of vogue and lead generation via the Internet was poorly understood,” the company says.


Today, provides service worldwide and has limo advertisers in all major US metropolitan markets, and in more than 22 countries including the U.K., Australia, Germany, Mexico, France, and Italy.



Simply put, offers users a tailor made search of thousands of limousine companies and peripheral providers within the industry. In addition, generates its leads via natural search, paid search, directory links, and an affiliate network of 300 active members.


“ lead distribution is a growth opportunity for limo companies all across the world since the amount of consumers are increasingly turning to the Internet to seek and select a limousine service,” the company says.


In addition to becoming one of the most valuable industry resources, the company’s use of online advertising to collect, qualify, and distribute timely, well qualified leads positions the company for future success. The website is a virtual one-stop-shop for anything related to luxury transportation and is an easy-to-navigate portal for everyday consumers.



Using is the fastest way for consumers to compare price, service level, and car quality, the company says.


“It is vastly more efficient than taking out the Yellow Pages and calling around or relying on word-of-mouth,” the company adds. Website leads are qualified by selecting time, place, and limo type. Then the lead is distributed to up to eight local limousine operators. Those operators then solicit the business usually through an e-mail — via phone if requested — that provides a price quote, a picture of the car, and a description of the service.


Most importantly, the company says it has more limousine operators advertising on its website than any other. It also has built a strong reputation for delivering the highest quality leads in the lead generation marketplace due to its traffic sources, customer service, and validation system.  


IN SEPTEMBER 2007, was bought by Todd Belfer and Jay Poplawski. With its new owners’ reputations for success and the help of its former owner, Michael Composto, future growth appears to be its only option.



Belfer co-founded Employee Solutions, Inc., a professional employer organization in 1990. The company reached $1 billion in revenue in 1996.


Belfer also co-founded M.D. Labs in 1993. M.D. Labs now leads the sports nutrition industry. He sold his interest in 2002 to a successful private equity group and founded RA Sushi, a Japanese restaurant chain, and then sold it to Benihana in 2002. Today, RA is the national leader in the Japanese restaurant industry.


Poplawski is the founder and managing member of The Cable Shopping Network (CSN), a multi-channel retailing company broadcasting on DirecTV, the Dish Network, the Comcast cable system, and the Internet. CSN has grown significantly over the years.


Before CSN, Poplawski was a workout specialist with the American Bank, and he was founder and managing partner of the Resort Development Group, which specializes in developing and managing resort condominium projects nationwide.

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