2023 Press Releases

Fleet Assist announces a record 2023 as it transitions its SMR services to electric December 2023

Vincent St Claire Managing Director
Vincent St Claire, Fleet Assist MD

Fleet Assist has reported a record year of trading volumes as it supports its fleet and leasing customers in navigating their way through the ever-changing SMR environment caused by the growth in EVs.

In 2023 Fleet Assist signed up further new customers and extended contracts with nine more as it grew its customer fleet to 1.3m and its annual SMR spend in excess of £173m. It now has 48 customers.

Fleet Assist’s MD Vincent St Claire says the secret to its success is its expert team who have SMR deeply rooted in their DNA which ensure it keeps one step ahead of customer needs whilst adding value to their SMR operations.

“We are very proud of 2023’s performance. We keep evolving our proposition based on the fast-moving market whilst not ignoring the fact the majority of fleets are still ICE vehicles.

“We have also retained our strategy of providing business intelligence data to both our customers and garage network free of charge. This data continues to prove very valuable as leasing companies and garages alike manage the changing SMR needs of their customers’ electric cars and LCVs,” he added.

One of the new initiatives Fleet Assist has launched to help manage the specific needs of EV drivers has been mobile servicing. Its 400 mobile units are being trialled across multiple lease, rental, salary sacrifice and subscription customers.

It has also announced a new service for leasing and rental fleets who wish to have a garage that isn’t on the Fleet Assist network scrutinised by its audit process. It provides a forensic overview of individual garages based on their capabilities, facilities and services offered.

Fleet Assist has also increased its investment in people. Alex Champkin has been promoted to the position of tech lead while newly promoted Karen Ewer and Nikos Kotrozos are spearheading the broad range of new products and new customers set to be onboarded in 2024.

“We have lots more initiatives to launch in 2024 as we respond to customers’ ever-changing SMR needs. We continue to invest in people across the business to cater for the growing customer fleet which we anticipate will reach 1.5 million vehicles by the end of 2024,” said St Claire.

Fleet Assist appoints Karen Ewer as its new operations director December 2023

Karen Ewer, Operations Director
Karen Ewer, Operations Director

Fleet Assist has promoted Karen Ewer to the position of operations director.

Karen is one of Fleet Assist’s longest-serving colleagues having worked at its Huntingdon HQ for 13 years, the last six as head of business development.

Karen has played a major part in Fleet Assist’s customer growth in 2023 from 40 to 48 leasing, rental and salary sacrifice fleets, where it provides a range of SMR services to 1.2m customer drivers. 2023 has been Fleet Assist’s 20th anniversary year, which has also seen a record SMR spend across its network of more than £200 million.

Vincent St Claire commented: “Karen’s unwavering loyalty and support to customers and Fleet Assist, coupled with her in depth knowledge of our systems and processes makes her an ideal candidate for this new role,” he added.

Karen Ewer commented: “The pace at which our customer base and product range has been growing over the past few years has meant Fleet Assist has been a very rewarding place to work. I am overjoyed with the news of my promotion and look forward to working with Vincent and the team as we continue to grow.”

Karen’s previous business development role is being headed up by Joanna Cooper on an interim basis.

Fleet Assist announces the appointment of supply chain director December 2023

Nikos Kotrozos, Supply Chain Director
Nikos Kotrozos, Supply Chain Director

Fleet Assist has promoted Nikos Kotrozos to the new role of supply chain director.

This follows Nikos leading a record year of engagement and performance levels from Fleet Assist’s 5,200-strong garage network.

Nikos has been with Fleet Assist for the past 12 months as head of all supplier relationships and has led the garage network to increased performance levels whilst ensuring the network continues to develop to meet the needs of its customers as they continue their EV journey.

This includes launching a mobile service network of 350 plus mobile technicians in addition to the 5,200 physical garages and a new garage audit service which provides a forensic overview of individual garages based on their capabilities, facilities and services offered.

In its 20th anniversary year Fleet Assist has seen its customers SMR spend in its network rise to over of £200m and for the first time its customer fleet of cars and LCVs exceeds over 1.2 million vehicles.

It now represents more than 48 leasing, rental and salary sacrifice customers while its ‘EV ready’ garage network continues to grow above 80%.

Vincent St Claire commented: “The changes have been vast since Nikos joined the company and reflect the skills of our network team in an ever-changing SMR environment.

“We look forward to a busy and productive 2024 where the plan is to continue to innovate in the world of SMR for leasing and rental company fleets and their drivers,” he added.

Fleet Assist strengths SMR proposition to support new EV brands arriving in the UK 02 October 2023

Nigel Ward, Fleet Assist Special Project Manager
Nigel Ward, Fleet Assist Special Project Manager
  • Range of SMR services will help new OEMs establish their brands in the UK
  • Nigel Ward appointed to Fleet Assist’s team of Special Project Managers

Fleet Assist has strengthened its team and launched a new SMR proposition as part of its supply chain management to cater for the growing number of new OEM brands set to launch in the UK over the coming 24 months.

Fleet Assist’s new proposition includes assisting OEMs appoint and manage their aftersales SMR network, setting up and running an online work booking service for drivers and incorporating work direction coupled with ethical authorisation to control maintenance spend.

The OEMs, which are predominantly Chinese and 100% electric, require a garage network already in place to support their aftersales network, or as they develop their own in preparation for when they start selling new models to UK fleets and consumers.

With a network of over 5,000 garages, over 86% of which are ‘EV ready’, Fleet Assist is well placed to set up and manage all elements of their SMR needs.

Nigel Ward has been appointed to Fleet Assist’s Special Projects Management team to manage the roll out of these services to the new OEMs and ensure the Fleet Assist network is best placed to service its existing customers.

Ward has held several positions within the fleet, leasing, and motor finance industry over more than 30 years including operations manager for Peugeot Contract Hire, national sales manager for Free2Move Lease and head of corporate sales south for Groupe PSA.

Ward is already in touch with multiple new brands, many of which have admitted to needing help and support with setting up their SMR network.

“Many of the new EV brands planning to launch here in the next 24 months are on a voyage of discovery as they arrive in the UK market. The UK boasts one of the most mature markets in the world and our aim is to use our two decades of SMR expertise to help and support their launch plans. This includes ensuring drivers are looked after once they get behind the wheel of their new car,” explained Ward.

Coupled with this announcement Grant Thornton’s automotive section headed by Owen Edwards announced it has agreed to collaborate with Fleet Assist on this project. This will allow Grant Thornton to provide OEMs with a holistic view of the marketplace coupled with Fleet Assist which has the breadth of network in terms of size and capabilities.

“There is a myriad of new brands set to launch here over the coming 24 months at both the value and premium end of the market. Having a good SMR network in place will increase confidence with drivers, consumers and company fleets in brands that have previously never sold cars in the UK,” explained Vincent St Claire, Fleet Assist’s MD.

“Fleets won’t entertain offering these cars to drivers, however good they are, unless they have an SMR network in place. We look forward to working with these new brands,” he added.