Fleet News

AA eyes leasing in expansion strategy

THE AA has launched a vehicle sourcing and personal leasing operation as part of a continuing expansion of its 'motoring essentials' strategy.

Future products could also include a vehicle leasing service for fleets, the company has revealed.

Bosses at the firm are asking fleets to 'think again' about the services that the AA can offer as part of its latest move towards a 'cradle to grave' product portfolio for fleets.

In August, the AA completed the acquisition of Halford's for £5.75 million, which it is rebranding as AA Service Centres.

The company is now considering both a maintenance budget card for the AA servicing network, and fixed cost maintenance packages.

Saul Parsonson, general manager for major accounts at the AA, also revealed that a venture into leasing to offer a 'motoring essentials' service is likely to go ahead.

He was previously responsible for Lombard Vehicle Management's portfolio of business to business sales activities and was involved in the development of the Royal Bank of Scotland's internet strategy for fleets.

Fleets and leasing companies are the key target area for many new services that Parsonson is focusing on, and the market where he sees most potential for growth of new products.

'Leasing and car sales are a motoring essential,' he said. 'Our strategy is to develop a business that provides all motoring essentials.

'A leasing product supports our vehicle sourcing strategy. 'Personal motoring schemes in particular, are a natural progression for our customers and these are now available.'

The AA recently launched a vehicle sourcing operation, called AA Buyacar, in a joint venture with Inchcape, the world's largest automotive services group.

Parsonson said this would provide a specific fleet car supply service this year, while personal leasing and eventually full service leasing would follow.

'We will start with providing a service for drivers taking a cash for car option and then consider the business case for providing operating leases and contract hire so we can cover both ends of the market,' he said.

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