Stellantis has restructured its fleet sales operations to provide improved interaction between its brands, under the leadership of recently appointed UK director for B2B James Taylor.
The changes mean that large fleets, leasing and rental companies, and specialist fleets will now be managed at group level, giving them access to all the brands under the Stellantis umbrella.
Smaller fleets and SMEs will still interact with the group at brand level, although a greater focus on inter-brand fluidity is being enabled via the new structure.
Taylor said: “The biggest benefits are with the customers. We know that customers want a single point of contact, so the fact we can go and talk to them on a Stellantis basis is a big advantage. Because each individual account manager is managing fewer accounts we can build a stronger relationship with those customers.”
Three fleet directors will manage the existing Stellantis brand groups. FCA brands Alfa Romeo, Abarth, Fiat and Jeep will be managed by Laurence Hagger, former head of used cars, remarketing, rental, contract hire and leasing at FCA.
Iain Montgomery, former FCA fleet director, has taken over as fleet director of the Peugeot, Citroen and DS brands.
A fleet director for Vauxhall will be appointed in due course.
The fleet directors will set the direction for their respective brands, but management and liaison with individual customers is done on a Stellantis basis.
Regional fleet teams will talk to customers primarily around the brands that they represent, but if there’s a customer that has an interest in another area they can talk about other brands too.
Each team has a regional fleet manager that reports into the fleet directors.
Taylor added: “Fleet is the only area of the business where we are going out on a Stellantis basis rather than the individual brand. There’s a unique challenge to communicate that to our customers.”
He said the majority of customers already work with more than one brand within Stellantis, so the new approach should be more straightforward with one point of contact.
“We can offer everything from a Citroen Ami to a DS 9 or an Alfa Stelvio. As the product portfolio fills out we will be able to offer customers more choice in each segment – that probably does give us a USP in the marketplace,” Taylor added.
The Group’s new fleet strategy will focus on growth in three areas: electric vans, electric and plug-in hybrid cars and the premium segments.
“We have a huge opportunity with electric LCV,” Taylor explained. “As a group we have an order bank that is bigger than the entire electric LCV market was in 2021.”
Taylor expects Stellantis to be the largest true fleet group in the LCV market this year.
In the company car market, the group has already built a healthy share in the segments it operates in. Taylor said further growth will come from capitalising on the introduction of new plug-in hybrid models like the Peugeot 308 and Vauxhall Astra.
The growth of DS and Alfa Romeo will also be product led, boosting the brand’s share of the premium market over time.