Kia Motors has awarded two new contracts worth £115m ($174m) to finished vehicle services provider Paragon Automotive in the UK. Paragon will support both new car storage and preparation, and de-fleet storage and preparation for the Korean carmaker.

Ian_Carlisle020Paragon will handle Kia vehicles through its operation in Immingham and the company said the operation there would receive significant investment to redevelop and extend its facilities.

“We continue to expand our operation to offer the scale and flexibility that leading manufacturers need in a robust partnership, developing an integrated solution for new and used vehicles that will use the latest technology to drive efficiencies across all processes,” said Paragon’s CEO, Ian Carlisle. (Carlisle, pictured, replaced Stephen Hucklesby as CEO back in July this year. Hucklesby has moved to become chief operations officer for the group).
To support the new business Paragon has appointed Brian Steeds as operations director to lead a dedicated management team. He has over 20 years of experience working in the automotive industry, including 16 years with Toyota in the UK, managing vehicle logistics and refurbishment operations. More recently he held senior management roles in lean operations, corporate and business planning, and a number of customer focused projects.

Kia said it had plans to sell 100,000 cars a year in the UK by 2020.
Awais Ajmal, head of supply chain for Kia said: “We have ambitious plans for Kia over the next decade and it was important to find a supply chain partner who shared our vision. Paragon has a commitment to innovation and efficiency that sits at the heart of this contract.”

Paragon works with manufacturers to provide the full suite of new vehicle services, including customs formalities and storage, along with volume processing, standard fitment of UK market required items and specialised vehicle conversions.
Paragon also provides services on the used car side of the business including preparation, defleet and remarketing of vehicles vehicles.

In total the business occupies 12 sites with in excess of 390 acres of storage and 630,000sq ft. of vehicle processing facilities. Each year Paragon handles over 750,000 vehicles of which over 460,000 are new. It operates a fleet of 110 transporters and 150 single move drivers to ensure nationwide logistics coverage.