The first phase of fleet operations from the UK’s latest finished vehicle provider, Quantum Automotive Solutions, began this week, and the company’s business model could spell the way forward for operators looking to learn from the lessons of asset risk, which left them vulnerable during the downturn.
Starting with just six Volvo FM12 transporters (each capable of carrying 11 vehicles), the company is pursuing a scaleable business model designed to match expenditure with industry demand.
Furthermore, the trucks, like the company’s other assets, are outsourced in line with its 90% flexible cost base, as the company moves away from the traditional fixed cost model.
“Quantum has a policy of outsourcing all support services to industry experts,” managing director Steve Berry told Automotive Logistics. “Therefore, virtually everything, other than drivers, is a flexible cost.”
Such outsourcing extends even to the company’s offices (outsourced to Regus), human resources (outsourced to a specialist company) and IT (pay per user with Star).
“This means costs remain proportionate to volume,” said Berry.
Quantum maintains such a strategy will give its customers a strategic advantage over competitors by offering them lower prices without compromising service or supplier expertise. It is already moving vehicles for customers including Gefco, Jaguar Land Rover and Ambrosetti UK.
The company said it is keen to avoid the legacy issues affecting other companies related to long term commitments for sites, offices, plant and equipment agreed at the peak of the market.
“Quantum does not have storage compounds or workshop with excess capacity,” said Berry. “Consequently, its solutions to prospective customers focus on what is best for their requirement – not what is best for the supplier.”
While current operations are limited to the UK, the company said discussions are taking place in other countries.
Berry is joined on the management board by chairman John Merry, a 30-year industry veteran who previously worked at the head of AutoLogic. Also onboard are: Tim Harms, technical services director; distribution director, Dave Bowes; IT director, Colin Williams; and key account director, Mike Sturgeon, who previously worked with Toyota Logistics.