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Fleets to offer company car and personal leasing schemes in parallel, says Grosvenor

Personal contract hire will become increasingly important to companies in the future, leading fleets to offer both company car and personal leasing schemes side by side.

Shaun Barritt, Grosvenor Group CEO, believes personal leasing schemes will become increasingly important to companies

So says Grosvenor Leasing as it outlines its view that “there will always be an ebb and flow towards and away from the traditional company car”.

Although HMRC data indicates an “unsupportive tax regime” has been prompting drivers to opt-out in droves, many in the industry believe the newly-implemented Benefit-in-Kind rates will see such drivers return to company car schemes due to the tax benefits of plug-in vehicles – a view that’s been set out by Andrew Jago, general manager, fleet and business at Jaguar Land Rover and supported by research from DriveElectric.

But Grosvenor thinks drivers will still gradually shift over to cash allowances.

It’s recently launched a major personal contract hire solution in partnership with Select Car Leasing in order to support businesses with such drivers.

“We have a clear aim to spearhead the personal contract hire market in the coming years by offering an exceptional PCH solution alongside our corporate funding and fleet management services, either as a direct offering to drivers or via company ‘Affinity’ schemes,” said Grosvenor Group CEO Shaun Barritt.

He added: “Rather than focus on whether company cars are here to stay or not, businesses should change their viewpoint and look at how best to support their ‘mobile workforce’.

“If you take an individual driver, who needs to use a car at work, whether they are in a company-provided vehicle or their own car, they still need to get reliably from A to B and reflect a positive image of the company by turning up in a car that is modern, reliable and in good condition.

“Consequently, we believe companies will have two schemes operating side by side. A company car scheme and a personal leasing scheme.”

Barritt’s comments come as Grosvenor Leasing scores its highest-ever rating in the company’s latest customer satisfaction index (CSI) survey.

Customers of the contract hire and fleet management specialist have given it a 100% satisfaction rating. Within the 100% rating, 70% of customers ranked Grosvenor as ‘Excellent’, 27% as ‘Good’ and 3% ‘Satisfactory’.

Barritt credited the rating to the investment made in the firm’s people, systems, products and processes.

“We are delighted with these results,” he said. “We have a business model of offering national capability with a personal touch, which means we attract very major fleets thanks to our financial stability and substantial fleet infrastructure, supported with an approach where customers build long-term relationships with our staff on first name terms with no call centres or voice mail queues.

“The balance works extremely well and enables us to deliver exceptional service and support to both car and light commercial vehicle drivers, while pro-actively working with fleet managers to drive down costs, reduce downtime and make on-going improvements to their overall fleet operation.”

The company, which say it’s the largest UK privately-owned contract hire and fleet management provider, offers a range of innovations such as its 0zone initiative to help fleets go greener and its OSCAR365 online fleet management system.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.