Well-known industry figure Bryan Phillimore, the former managing director of UK motor industry consultancy Aplin Phillimore Associates (APA), has died following a lengthy illness.
Phillimore worked with former chairman Tony Aplin to build APA and The Network Group into two of the largest management consultancies seen in the UK retail motor industry, during a 20-year period leading up to the turn of the millennium.
Multi-award-winning programmes created by the consultancy included Network Q and MasterFit for Vauxhall; RapidFit, BSI-ISO National Network Accreditation, Ford Contract Motoring for Ford and Iveco Truck Leasing and Fiat Contract Hire for Fiat UK.
The company also revolutionised the acceptance of vehicle leasing with fleets when they created Wheelease and Trucklease for Lombard, which made Lombard UK market leaders for 20 years.
APA played a leading role in popularising leasing as a preferred funding option for major fleets, and years later the industry used the same APA contract hire platform to popularise personal contract lease programmes for the UK retail car market sector.
APA worked in many motor sectors, including pioneering new operating and behavioural standards in the UK to address the poor image of the UK used car market sector.
It created national used car programmes for Fiat, Renault, BWW and Peugeot before pioneering the Network Q used car programme for Vauxhall.
APA also formulated the UK motor industry standards for national local business user and national fleet programmes and assisted vehicle manufacturers in setting up many national dealer networks including Renault, Austin-Rover, Fiat/Lancia, Peugeot and Vauxhall.
The consultancy also set up and ran national vehicle manufacturer contract hire and leasing businesses for PSA, Opel, Forward Trust/Fiat-Lancia, Iveco Trucks, Ford Credit/Ford.
In South Africa, the company created a fully-operational vehicle contract hire and leasing business for Standard Chartered Bank (Fleetlease).
Later APA bought Fleetlease from the bank and went on to become the market leader in South Africa and was subsequently bought by LeasePlan, the global market leader.
Phillimore and Aplin also co-founded the Network Rental Group with David Owens and National Car Cleaning with Stan Macal.
Network Rentals managed national dealer car rental schemes for eight vehicle manufacturers, including Vauxhall, Renault, VW, Fiat, PSA and Ford.
Phillimore was a UK fleet and truck sector expert and, together with the late Professor Peter Cooke, was closely involved with Bill Jackson in setting up the very first few editions of industry title Fleet News, providing early editorial advice, writing articles and obtaining vital advertising income from APA’s existing vehicle manufacturer fleet contacts.
Aplin said: “Bryan was a one-off and whilst a low-key guy, was a top-class long-term strategic thinker who was also as a brilliant refiner of new innovative ideas and early-stage concepts. People like Bryan Phillimore are rare indeed.”