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Fleet specialist dealers fuel Kia's business car rise

Date: 13 August 2008

Yaser Shabsogh

Kia is putting much of its 38% rise in business registrations down to its network of new fleet specialist dealers.

The firm has 20 specialists benefiting from extra investment in infrastructure, staff, training, databasing and data capture.

This group now accounts for 30% of Kia's fleet business.

"It gives them an opportunity to deal with the bigger regional or national fleets," said Kia fleet boss Andrew Sellars. "We want to get their volume closer to 50% of our fleet business."

The company passed Saab and Seat to take 18th position in the fleet manufacturer's table, and said the resurgence after a patchy fleet history is down to more desirable product rather than any large-scale daily rental or other short-cycle volume, as had been the case in the past.

"Our daily rental is through Hertz and Europcar, and less than 10% of our volume is through them," said Kia sales director Yaser Shabsogh.

Kia is also hoping to lift its leasing market share. "We don't do enough at the moment. Historically those segments are areas that we haven't focussed on," said Shabsogh. "We didn't have the expertise, products or approach to marketplace."

But that is changing, with the Ceed being the first of a more appealing range of models.

The firm is also increasing its Motability representation. Volumes have grown by 20% off the back of improving residual values.