Fleet News

Jeans in U-turn over AA sale fears

AUTOMOTIVE Strategy chief Rod Jeans has dismissed initial serious concerns about the sale of the AA to Centrica which he warned could threaten its independent voice. As a user of the AA, the contract hire firm was concerned about service levels and the role of the AA in protecting motorists' interests when it was controlled by shareholders.

Jeans had warned: 'We must remember the AA is not just another roadside recovery facility whose services we buy in for customers. The fleet industry and its customers have benefited from this independent voice, whose strength and authority come from the fact that the AA has been a mutual organisation and therefore speaks for its vast numbers of subscription members. I have doubts that this authority and influence will be lost if the AA simply becomes a brand of Centrica.'

But this week Jeans said his fears were unfounded and he was reassured by comments following the purchase by Centrica that the AA would continue its well-known role. Jeans said: 'Questions we raised have been answered.' Centrica completed its £1.1 billion purchase of the AA with a promise to plough millions of pounds into new technology and services at the breakdown company.

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