A new business drive into the corporate fleet market is being planned by medium-term rental specialist Meridian Vehicle Solutions in 2019.
So far, the company has worked almost entirely through leasing and fleet management companies as intermediaries, white labelling their product for more well-known brands.
Phil Jerome, managing director, explained: “While we expect that working these sectors will always form the core of our business, it is essential to our future growth that we start to develop our own direct sales customer base.
“The fact is that the vast majority of potential customers for medium rental are almost certainly unaware that the product even exists, so we are very much starting at the beginning by creating awareness.
“Our belief is that the current fleet market, where the economic uncertainty created by Brexit is a growing issue, company car taxation remains in flux and problems caused by WLTP are persisting, is very much one that will be receptive to what we offer.”
Its model is to offer cars for periods of 3-12 months with a monthly rate that is broadly the same as a contract hire rental, but without the long term commitment or penalties for early termination, says Jerome.
“This has enormous appeal for fleets who are keen to defer vehicle replacement decisions until the longer term picture is clearer,” he said.
Initially, most of Meridian’s sales efforts will take place through a telesales team with the aim of increasing familiarity with medium term rental.
“The target is simply to talk to as many businesses as possible during 2019, explaining the benefits of medium term rental as a product and our proposition specifically,” continued Jerome.
“Our experience is that, when people running fleets gain an understanding of what we do, they can immediately see ways in which we could potentially fit into their operations. It is very much a question of trying to reach this level with a wide potential customer base.”
Meridian’s medium term rental model provides brand new cars on leases of 3-12-months.