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Meridian to work more directly with corporate fleets in 2019

Medium-term rental specialist Meridian Vehicle Solutions is to increasingly target corporate fleets in 2019 through direct relationships.

Meridian MD Phil Jerome

Meridian MD Phil Jerome

Although the company has historically worked almost entirely through leasing and fleet management companies as intermediaries using white-labelled solutions, managing director Phil Jerome said it was essential to growth to start developing a direct sales customer base. This includes creating initial awareness of medium term rental as a fleet solution – building on plans announced a year ago.

Jerome explained: “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.

“Essentially, our 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. This has enormous appeal for fleets who are keen to defer vehicle replacement decisions until the longer term picture is clearer.”

Jerome added that initially, most of Meridian’s sales efforts would 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.

“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.”

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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.