WITH 40 new products to launch over five years, there’s plenty going on at Jaguar Land Rover (JLR). And not just from the product engineers.
There’s been a major change in the corporate sales team, too, in order to better serve SMEs as well as the larger fleets.
Led by head of corporate sales Jon Wackett, who came to JLR from Ford when JLR was part of the Ford Premier Automotive Group, the new corporate team he has assembled “brings the brands into alignment”, according to Jon.
While that might sound like the precursor to a horoscope prediction, Jon expands: “During summer I was tasked with how to address the market, in particular the different sectors,” explains Jon. “We want to cross-pollinate the brands into the companies we visit.”
In particular, Jon has devised a new JLR strategy for SMEs.
Splitting the responsibility between Jaguar and Land Rover corporate dealers and sales teams, the dealers will look after small businesses with fleets of 1-25 cars; and the corporate sales team will look after those SME firms with 25-49 company car fleets.
SME company car fleets less than 25
“For SMEs with fleets of less than 25 we need to make sure customers can buy cars in a number of ways, from outright purchase to contract hire.
“We need to engage our dealers with these customers because there’s a company car base out there of around 700,000 vehicles, although there remains a lack of clear detailed sector insight.
For SMEs with fleets of less than 25 we need to make sure customers can buy cars in a number of ways, from outright purchase to contract hire
“What we do know, though, is that these SME fleets behave in a very retail fashion, so we need to make sure we can satisfy these needs successfully.
SME fleets with 25-49 company cars
Jon says there are about 15,000 of these mid-size SME fleets, “And they require significant marketing and sales effort to gain market share for Jaguar and Land Rover.
“We’ll focus on the senior managers to ensure we can help them understand the products we have available.
“We’ll do this with six corporate sales managers targeting fleets with 25 plus fleets. I want them to visit eight businesses per week.”
No pressure then…
Underpinning the sales to SMEs in both sectors is the JLR corporate sales business centre, which is entirely brand focused, providing sales support to SME customers.
As part of this shake up Jon has two field team managers heading up each brand. For Jaguar the Corporate Field Team Manager is Paul Brittan, while the Corporate Field Team Manager for Land Rover is Ryan Miller.
Paul Brittan, Corporate Field Team Manager, Jaguar
Paul, who has jumped the fence from Land Rover to Jaguar, says that the new Jaguar XF Sportbrake is a significant new car which great appeals to SMEs.
“Many SMEs need their cars to cover a variety of purposes, from smart business car during the week, to lifestyle vehicle at the weekend. The Sportbrake gives us a great option for this. The CO2 is the same as the saloon, so there’s no disadvantage there.
“The Sportbrake can be slightly more expensive on benefit in kind company car tax than say a BMW 520d, but once they experience driving a Jaguar, we’ve found drivers think the extra £15 a month is money well spent!”
And the new products don’t stop there of course: there’s the new Jaguar F-TYPE sports car on the horizon too.
Paul says he is going through a due diligence process to appoint 20 corporate dealers that will support the JLR corporate sales SME programme.
“In each of these dealerships will be a full time corporate sales manager who will be engaging with local business community,” explains Paul.
So if your small business has a small fleet of company cars, expect a knock on the door any time soon!
Ryan Miller, Corporate Field Team Manager, Land Rover
Although Ryan has only been in situ with Land Rover for the last five months, he has a track record at JLR that stretches back 20 years.
Starting as an engineering apprentice, Ryan spent 10 years as a design engineer, then jumped over to sales and marketing, where among other jobs he was global supply manager and product manager for Range Rover.
“We’ve appointed 28 dedicated Land Rover corporate dealers around the UK to look after those SMEs with sub-25 company car fleets,” says Ryan.
Ryan says the Range Rover Evoque was a “game changer for Land Rover” – clearly something we agree with. The Range Rover Evoque recently won our Best Company Car for SME Business Owners award – a reflection of the fact that there’s so much that’s desirable about the scaled down Range Rover.
“We’ve followed up Evoque with the new lightweight Range Rover. Business leaders and small business owners are very interested in the new Range Rover – we’ll be taking the car to as many businesses as we can to demonstrate it,” continues Ryan.
Not only can you expect a knock on the door with a Range Rover in tow, but you can also expect a superior customer service experience.
“Over the last 12 months we’ve been trying to upgrade the experience for our customers. A key part in corporate sales is our relationship with SME customers. They have an expectation from us – and from our dealers – that we must meet,” explains Ryan.
“If we can do that, I’m sure SMEs will find Land Rover a really good company car for their fleets.”
Last word on corporate sales
Jon Wackett says that the changes he has introduced to the JLR corporate sales team represent “a significant commitment from the company to address the corporate market in the long term.”
In particular Jon believes that SMEs can add greatly to JLR’s corporate sales – and at the same time enjoy some of the best cars on the market.
We suspect he – and his team – might be pushing at an open door…