Expanding fleet management company Q Fleet has moved into one of Teesside’s flagship business centres to provide additional workspace for its growing team.

Mark Batey, who set up the business in 2013 having built up more than 20 years of experience in the sector, has moved into the Innovation Centre managed by UK Steel Enterprise (UKSE), the Tata Steel subsidiary, in Hartlepool.

“We were bursting at the seams in our Billingham offices,” he said. “We needed more space for the current seven-strong team and so that we can take on more staff early next year.

“One of our clients in the energy sector started out in the Innovation Centre so I already knew that the facilities and support are just what we needed. The location is ideal too as our client list is increasing across the UK as well as in the region.”

Q Fleet operates as an independent agency not linked to any vehicle manufacturer or service.  The fleet management services provided include sourcing vehicles, buying and selling, finance and ongoing management as well as a more retail-focused arm in the form of a car lease shop.

“We work with clients needing anything from a single vehicle to hundreds,” said Mark, who acquired an accountancy qualification to add to his company’s expertise as the financial side of fleet management became increasingly complex.

“Demand is growing steadily from businesses that don’t have this expertise in-house through to larger companies who do have a Fleet Manager but choose to outsource some of the operation very cost-effectively.

“Businesses are becoming more aware of the many implications and legal liabilities involved right up to recognising that directors can be held responsible for corporate manslaughter if a vehicle is involved in a serious accident.

“It’s a challenging area so they are increasingly looking for the reassurance of independent advice and expertise,” he added.

This year has seen a particularly significant growth in business for the company after they decided to offer free fleet audits.   After taking the opportunity to check that they were complying with all regulations and operating cost-effectively, a large number of businesses then chose to work with Q Fleet.

Joan Cook, a member of the UKSE team based at the Innovation Centre on Hartlepool’s Queens Meadow Business Park, said: “We were happy to welcome Mark and his team to the Centre and look forward to seeing Q Fleet continue to grow.  They are joining a friendly and supportive business community with around 50 business tenants operating in many different sectors.”

Details of UKSE’s support for businesses with finance and premises is available on 01642 777 888 and at www.ukse.co.uk.   Q Fleet is at www.qfleet.co.uk