Fleet deals round-up

Compiled by Jo Tacon

LLOYDS TSB AUTOLEASE

£2.1m contract hire CV deal

Lloyds TSB Autolease (LTSBA) has won a £2.1m, three-year
contract to manage housing and maintenance specialist Morris &
Spottiswood’s fleet of 120 commercial vehicles.

In order to reduce costs, Morris & Spottiswood was advised
by Lloyds TSB’s Specialist Commercial Vehicles Unit to move from
short-term spot hire of vehicles to a contract hire policy,
bringing down rental charges and improving the efficiency of
management of its fleet. 

LTSBA worked closely with Morris & Spottiswood to ensure
that the individual specifications of the vehicles met the
company’s drivers’ needs.

“The majority of our work is delivered on site or on the road.
Having operational teams who are pleased with their vehicles was of
the utmost importance in the decision making process,” said Gareth
Roberts, senior supply chain partner at Morris &
Spottiswood.

Double wins for LTSBA’s public sector team

Two academic institutions, the University of Nottingham and
Landrillo College in Wales, have outsourced management of their
fleets to LTSBA, with the two deals – worth a combined £1m – signed
on the same day.

The University of Nottingham’s 32-vehicle fleet is composed of
cars and CVs, used across a number of sites. Cost management and
minimisation of environmental impact were key to LTSBA’s winning
the contract for sole-supplier status.

The deal with Landrillo College for provision of its 23-vehicle
fleet, meanwhile, continues a three-year partnership between the
lessor and the college, with green fleet products again tipping the
balance in LTSBA’s favour.

Gary Hamilton, business development manager in LTSBA’s public
sector team said: “We were naturally delighted to secure these two
significant deals in one day. They are a result of a long-term
commitment to provide both organisations with consultation on how
their fleet policies can meet their environmental and financial
objectives, which made it particularly satisfying to secure
them.”

RH Group’s £2.1m company car contract award

A three-year contract to fund and manage the 140-strong company
car fleet at RH Group has been awarded to LTSBA, in a deal worth
£2.1m.

RH Group’s subsidiary RH Freight Services approached LTSBA for
help with its company car scheme, in order to boost its appeal to
potential recruits. LTSBA produced a company car offering for the
freight company that will see its staff in better cars, while
delivering cost savings, the lessor said.


LOMBARD VEHICLE MANAGEMENT

Housing sector van deal worth £4.5m for
Lombard

Lombard Vehicle Management (LVM) has won an exclusive agreement
with a major housing group, building on recent success in the area
for the lessor (see MF Sep 08).

In a deal worth £4.5m, Lombard will supply Walsall Housing Group
with 210 Ford LCVs on a contract hire basis over 36 months, with
the option of an additional three years. 

The contract is a first for Walsall, which previously spot-hired
its fleet. The lessor said Walsall’s “dramatic” decision to move to
contract hire “underlines the powerful argument for leasing in the
current economic climate.”

LVM’s in-house Van Plus + team will deliver 48 different
specifications to Walsall, meeting “precise user requirements”, the
lessor said. Moreover, said LVM, parts of the fleet’s racking have
been refurbished and recycled, “reducing costs and environmental
impact”.

The Walsall vans will also trial the Lombard Fleet Tracker
telematics system, “which can improve service, reduce fuel
consumption and emissions, and manage risk,” LVM said. In addition,
LVM will also provide Walsall with four 12-tonne heavy commercial
vehicles.

“Having a well maintained, green and efficient fleet of vehicles
is an important way for us to provide an efficient and responsive
service to customers,” Darren Russell, Walsall Housing Group’s
fleet manager, said.


CARILLION FLEET MANAGEMENT

Eco vans delivered to business supplies
firm

Office2Office has taken delivery of 18 Mercedes Sprinter 311 and
511 series ECO-Start vans, and one Smith Edison electric van from
its fleet provider, Carillion Fleet Management, as part of the
business supplies firm’s efforts to cut carbon emissions from its
fleet.

The Mercedes Sprinters have been provided on a four-year
contract hire basis, with full maintenance and an accident repair
package. The ECO-Start system cuts the ignition when the vehicle is
stationary, and has been fitted to the vans without an on/off
button, meaning the feature cannot be overridden by drivers. By
doing so, Office2Office plans to reduce its fuel usage by 10 per
cent, as well as to reduce noise and engine wear.

Mike Weston, operations director at Office2Office said: “We are
working to reduce the carbon footprint of our fleet vehicles,
particularly within the London area.

“Many of our deliveries take place in city centres, often during
unsociable hours so we are actively looking to reduce the noise, as
well as air pollution from our vehicles.”
The Smith Edison electric van, meanwhile, is completely
battery-powered and has a top speed of 50mph. It can run for 80
miles on a single charge.

The van is the first electric vehicle to be delivered to a
contract hire client by Carillion, which said it is stealing a
march on other fleet providers by leasing out electric-powered
vehicles. The lessor said: “Most of Carillion’s rivals avoid the
new technology as they are unwilling to take the risk on vehicle
and battery disposal at the end of the contract hire
agreement.”


LEX

Heart of Midlothian gets 24 Citroëns

Football club Heart of Midlothian has taken delivery of 24
Citroëns in a deal arranged by David Reid of M&D Vehicle
Management, with contract hire provided by Lex on a two-year,
20,000 mile basis.

Service, maintenance and repair for the vehicles will be
provided by Citroën Retail Group Scotland in return for advertising
opportunities and exposure to the Hearts fanbase, comprising some
400,000 people worldwide. 

Models to be supplied include variants from the C3, C4, and C5
ranges and several C-Crosser 4×4 cars.

David Southern, marketing and communications director at Hearts,
said the Edinburgh club had gone for Citroëns as “we were impressed
by Citroën’s value for money proposition, high levels of standard
equipment and excellent safety features.” Low whole-life costs were
also an important consideration, along with the cars’ “low
emissions ratings and excellent fuel economy”.

Reid, meanwhile, said he was happy to have done the deal for
Hearts – but that it would not stop him working with Hearts’ bitter
local rivals, Hibernian, for whom he had previously arranged
funding for a small fleet of minibuses. “Business is business,” he
said.


ALD AUTOMOTIVE

Sale-and-leaseback for building society’s
fleet

ALD Automotive has won a sole-supply outsourcing contract to
manage around 300 company cars and 60 cash opt-out drivers for
building society Skipton.

Skipton had until now outright purchased its fleet, but made the
decision to switch to third-party fleet management, turning to ALD
to provide a sale-and-leaseback solution. Some 220 cars have
already been sold and leased back by ALD, with the remaining 80 to
be replaced “following the introduction of a choice list based
around wholelife costs”, ALD said.

ALD will also provide accident management, daily rental, risk
management solutions and a telematics system. Driver contact will
be managed via a dedicated helpdesk.

The lessor already managed an affinity scheme for Skipton’s cash
opt-out drivers, and won the fleet contract after a “competitive”
tender process. 

Sales director at ALD, Mel Dawson said the fleet provider’s
whole-life cost tool AutoSolutions was “key” to winning the bid, as
it “analyses every single factor – both corporate and personal –
impacting on vehicle funding, car choice and services”.