Meteoric Ashfield Takes On 500th Toyota

9 July 2001

Ashfield Healthcare, the second largest and the fastest-growing provider of contract sales teams to the UK pharmaceuticals industry, has taken delivery of its 500th Toyota car in under two years.

The company, based in Ashby de la Zouch in Leicestershire, now has an eight per cent market share and has doubled its salesforce strength to 600 in the past year alone. It supplies dedicated mobile teams of anything from two to eighty sales executives for pharmaceutical companies, including five of the country’s top 10.

Unless the client company chooses to provide its own cars, Ashfield’s sales teams use its Toyota Avensis fleet. Supplied on full-maintenance contract hire through Lloyds TSB Autolease, the cars consist mainly of 2.0-litre diesel-engined GS models, with some 1.8 petrol GSs and a number of CDXs.

“We’re delighted with our relationship with Toyota, which is absolutely first-class,” says Drew Harrison, Ashfield Healthcare’s Business Development Director. “The reps love driving the cars because of the quality of the build and the finish. They just can’t believe it when they get a brand new car with satellite navigation and air-conditioning as standard and a CD-player. They’re delighted, and the satellite system helps them work efficiently and effectively in their region.

“Long may our expansion continue. It would be nice to be sitting here this time next year saying we’ve just taken our 1,000th Toyota!” The nature of the business makes forward-planning problematic for both Ashfield and its suppliers. Sudden demands for staff from clients inevitably translate into demands for cars from Toyota Fleet at comparatively short notice. “We’re probably giving them a maximum of eight to ten weeks’ notice and to my knowledge they’ve never let us down,” says Mr Harrison.

“It seems that if we need ten or fifty cars we simply get on the phone and the cars arrive on time. We don’t get better service from anybody else – we have a very good relationship and they help us with all sorts of peripheral matters as well.”

Drew Harrison says of Ashfield Healthcare’s rapid expansion: “Our success comes about from our commitment to results and understanding of the market. We have credibility, and we’re hungry for the business.”

Jon Pollock, General Manager of Toyota Fleet, adds: “We’d like to think those same qualities can be applied to Toyota Fleet as Ashfield’s supplier and in general. We’re delighted to have been given the chance to meet this fast-growing company’s needs to date, and intend to make sure that we maintain a satisfactory level of response in the future.”


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Meteoric Ashfield Takes On 500th Toyota


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