Fleet News

Bodyshop expansion set for Perry Group

BODYSHOP and accident management expansion is to take place at Perry Group, alongside the development of more profitable used car operations, which are less vulnerable to price concerns and more profitable than new cars. The group announced a drop in pre-tax profits from £8.6 million in 1998 to £4.9 million last year on a 12% fall in turnover to £446.5 million (1998: £510 million).

The slump was blamed on lower vehicle sales, partly as a result of the company's continuing pullback from low-margin fleet business as well as lower retail sales and the decline in residual values. However, chairman Richard Allen said an increase in turnover from accident repair, incident management, contract hire and leasing and central and other activities was not enough to offset the reduction in vehicle purchases.

The company's accident management arm, Network Services, will grow in parallel with the expansion of Nationwide, the UK's largest single group of independent body repairers The company's decision to develop both businesses follows a in-house survey which revealed that 84% of fleets could be losing money through inefficient accident management processes.

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