After over two years’ of research, the world’s first environmentally-focused car and van rental company – Green Motion – became a reality. Richard’s business philosophy was simple; it was to provide both leisure and business customers the opportunity to hire a vehicle on a short-term basis that was kinder to the environment. This was achieved by sourcing cars and commercial vehicles which boasted the latest in environmental and fuel-efficient technologies.
Initially the fleet choice was quite limited and included products from Toyota and Honda such as the Prius and Civic along with hybrids from Lexus and particulate-filtered diesel vehicles from Volkswagen Group and BMW. Today, the fleet landscape is very different. Green Motion offers vehicles from over 10 motor manufactures including full electric models, range extenders, hybrids and low CO2 diesels, and operates a fleet of more than 18,000 vehicles worldwide.
Richard did not want the business ethos to form solely around the type of cars offered for hire and as such he set about ensuring that the business itself supported its own green ethos, touching all areas of the business from recycling to sustainability and creating essentially a green company offering a green service. Richard was also keen to ensure that the service delivered from Green Motion was of the very highest level .
Green Motion’s first franchised locations opened for business in early 2008 in the United Kingdom, Leicestershire and Gatwick being amongst its pioneering sites. While the brand has enjoyed fantastic growth in the United Kingdom, Green Motion has also developed the brand globally. Once the organisation had proven its ability to operate the business model in other markets, Lowden started to strategically focus on the rapid expansion of the Green Motion brand worldwide. Since 2012, Green Motion has gone from operating in two countries to 22 countries with more than 220 car hire locations and is continuing to grow at great pace.
The locations spread from the Middle East, throughout Europe to North, Central and South America. But why does Lowden think that Green Motion has proved to be such a successful franchise business? “The car rental industry globally is a multi-billion dollar concern with customers demanding more and more freedom when it comes to travel,” he explains. “Green Motion is truly a brand with a genuine and relevant unique selling proposition where we give discerning customers the opportunity to play their part in reducing their own personal emissions when it comes to travel. By operating a 100 percent-franchised system, customers receive all the benefits and facilities of a truly international organisation while also having a high level of personal contact with the franchise owners at a location level. This model allows us to deliver a consistently high level of service, which is crucial to our industry.”
To find out more about becoming a Green Motion local or country franchisee, visit their website at greenmotion.com or alternatively contact their head office in the United Kingdom by calling +44 (0) 20 7186 4000.