Fleet News

Avis profits suffer

WEAKENING economies that have forced fleets to tighten their corporate belts caused Avis Europe's pre-tax profits to tumble by more than 15%.

The group has posted pre-tax profits of £77.3 million for 2002, down 15.2% from £89.5 million the previous year, and warned that its short-term outlook was uncertain. Corporate business accounted for about a fifth (22%) of its revenue in 2002 but the company said that this business was impacted from the second quarter onwards when companies further reduced their travel. Revenue from accident and insurance replacement business was also down, the company reported.

Chairman Sir Bob Reid said: 'With no expectation of significant recovery in the European economies in 2003 and the likelihood of continuing geo-political tension, the short-term outlook for our business is uncertain. We shall maintain very tight control on fleet and staff levels, as well as developing other cost-efficiencies.'

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