Stuart O'Brien, Author at Fleet Summit
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Stuart O'Brien

Clean Air Zones to impact 40% of businesses, research shows

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More than four out of 10 businesses (43%) believe they will be affected by the introduction of Clean Air Zones (CAZ) across the UK and the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) in London, 

The findings stem from the 2020 Arval Mobility Observatory, which gains insights into fleet and mobility trends across the UK and Europe through a wide ranging set of questions.

It also asked respondents how they will react to the introduction of CAZs and the ULEZ. In total, 76% said they will replace vehicles to meet the new standards, 27% will find other types of transportation to allow them to continue doing business within the zones, and 27% will make no changes, accepting the impact and cost.

Shaun Sadlier, Head of Arval Mobility Observatory in the UK, said: “These results indicate the ways in which fleets are planning to manage the introduction of the new zones across the country although, of course, many have now been delayed by the coronavirus crisis.

“Overall, more than four out of 10 believe they will be affected and, of these, around three out of four plan to meet the challenge by operating vehicles that meet whatever new regulations are being introduced.

“To us, this is unsurprising. In most places, the introduction of CAZs are really designed to remove vehicles that use older, less clean emissions technology from cities. The truth is that because the regulations are relatively straightforward, many fleets are already compliant. Over the next couple of years, just through normal, planned replacement of vehicles, most should meet the regulations.

“It’s also thought-provoking to see that around a quarter are planning to use alternative modes of transport. It would be fascinating to know what these are, especially whether some fleets are going to be able to make a switch into public transport or other mobility options.”

68% think In-car technology is a dangerous distraction

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68% of motorists say they’ve noticed an increase in other drivers being distracted by dashboard controls or using their mobile phones, but just 13% admit to being side-tracked themselves when driving.

The somewhat paradoxical findings are from a survey carried out by Venson Automotive Solutions that also shows that while 38% of drivers use hands-free/Bluetooth in-car technology for making phone calls whilst driving, nearly a fifth admitted to balancing the ‘phone somewhere to keep an eye on it, such as a cup holder, when using it as a satnav.

The survey results come as the Department of Transport (DfT) has announced a review of roads policing that will look at ways of reducing road casualties and deaths, and is asking for evidence on in-car technology and how this could be increasing accident risks as well as reducing it.

Businesses and fleet managers are recommended by Venson to impress on drivers the dangers of being distracted by their in-car tech and ensure robust processes are in place to meet their duty of care obligations. 

Drivers currently risk six penalty points on their licence and a £200 fine if they use a hand-held phone or satnav when driving. For motorists who passed their driving test within 2 years of being caught, the consequences are even more severe – they will automatically lose their licence and have to reapply and pay for a new provisional licence – passing both theory and practical parts of the driving test again to get a full licence.

However, the Venson survey shows that people’s appetite for more advanced in-car tech is growing – even if it isn’t in their current vehicle; 67% saying they would use a dashboard satnav if it were available in their car and nearly 50% of people surveyed said that they would like to have an emergency call button in their car in case of being involved in a road accident.

An app which informs the driver about the health of their vehicle’s tyres would also be welcomed by 48% of people, while 43% would make use of driver assistance technology such as cruise control, lane departure detection and speed limit exceeded notifications. 

In contrast, only 26% of people surveyed said they would like to see entertainment or lifestyle dashboard technology, such as apps that play music or offer concierge services.

Simon Staton, Client Management Director at Venson, said: “We may have some of the safest roads in the world, but anything that can be done to reduce the number of casualties on our roads is to be welcomed. The advances made in in-car technology have moved on very quickly, and as they become standard in new vehicles, the scope for driver distraction also grows. We look forward to the results and recommendations from the DfT review and would encourage businesses and fleetmanagers to get involved in the consultation process.”

The review is open for input until 5th October 2020.   More information can be found at:

The upcoming Fleet Summit has moved dates! Attend in person or virtually…

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Due to the recent updates from the government, we have made the decision to move the date of the Summit to the 8th & 9th October at Whittlebury Park, Northampton.

Still forming the same concept, your guest pass includes; a personalised itinerary of relaxed meetings with top industry suppliers, networking with fellow professionals that share your challenges, overnight accommodation, all meals and refreshments.

There is no hard sell at the event, just a great opportunity to build business relationships – Virtual attendance options are also available.

Social Distancing: We are abiding by social distancing rules to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of our event attendees and staff. The event will have restricted attendee numbers, pre-arranged meetings and clear floor markings throughout. Meeting booths now allow for a 1-2-meter gap with a clear partition screen between both participants, as well as other forms of prevention.

Click here to confirm your place or if you cannot make this date, then we are also hosting a 2nd annual Fleet Summit on 9th & 10th November at the same venue.

For more information about these Summit’s, contact us today.

WEBINAR REWIND: Big Data & Maximising Performance with Webfleet

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Don’t worry if you missed last week’s webinar from Webfleet looking at the use of big data in fleet management – You can re-watch the entire session online!

Big data is central to our lives on a level not seen before, even if we don’t know it. The stock levels available on supermarket shelves, to which TV programs Netflix recommends, or scientific advice in the government’s daily briefings, it’s all a result of big data feeds that everyone is a part of, and fleet is no exception.

Joined by Highways England, the Webfleet team will explored how big data is already driving change in current transport operations and shaping the future of mobility.

So whether you are looking at the safety & wellbeing of employees on our roads, using AI to assist with purchasing the right vehicles, or using big data to make meaningful business decisions, then this webinar is for you.

Key learnings:

• How does big data help you to decide the future of your fleet? – How can big data help you identify which vehicles you buy or which vehicles become electric?
• Discussions with Mark Cartwright from the Safer Roads Team – Focus on how big data is used by Highways England to make the roads safer and introduce new protocols.
• How big data can be used by your business to make your fleet safer. Using Gamification to allow comparisons of individuals within your fleet or industry average. When business returns to the “new normal”, how will you quickly identify those in your fleet who are the biggest risk? Old world risk vs new world risk.

To rewatch the webinar now, click here.

We’ve got all your needs covered at the Fleet Summit

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Your free pass to this September’s Fleet Summit waiting for you – and you’ll be able to attend either in person or virtually via video link.

Your attendance is fully complimentary and includes; overnight accommodation (if attending in person), access to budget-saving and innovative solution providers, LIVE seminar sessions, networking with peers, plus all meals and refreshments throughout if attending on site.

14th & 15th September – Whittlebury Park, Northampton – Live and virtual attendance options are available.

We have a very limited number of places left – click here to confirm your free pass today.

Alternatively, you can contact us if you have any questions.

Do you specialise in LPG/Alternative Fuel & Fuel Management? We want to hear from you!

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Each month on Fleet Management Briefing we’re shining the spotlight on a different part of the fleet & logistics market – and in August we’ll be focussing on LPG/Alternative Fuel & Fuel Management solutions.

It’s all part of our ‘Recommended’ editorial feature, designed to help fleet buyers find the best products and services available today.

So, if you’re a supplier of LPG/Alternative Fuel & Fuel Management solutions and would like to be included as part of this exciting new shop window, we’d love to hear from you – for more info, contact Chris Cannon on 01992 374096 /

Here’s our features list in full:

Aug – LPG/Alternative Fuel & Fuel Management
Sep – Vehicle Tracking
Oct – Duty of Care
Nov – Grey Fleet
Dec – Service, Maintenance & Repair

Electric vehicles top 2020 fleet buying trends

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Electric Vehicles, Telematics & Tracking and Hybrid Vehicles top the list of solutions the UK’s leading fleet management professionals are sourcing in 2020.

The findings have been revealed by the Fleet Summit and are based on delegate requirements ahead of this year’s events.

Delegates registering to attend the event were asked which areas they needed to invest in during 2020 and beyond.

A significant 79% are looking to invest in EVs, 55% for Telematics & Tracking and 49% for Hybrid Vehicles.

Just behind were EV Charging (47%) and Fuel Management (45%).

% of delegates at the Fleet Summit sourcing certain products & solutions (Top 10):

Electric Vehicles 79%
Telematics & Tracking 55%
Hybrid Vehicles 49%
Electric Vehicles – Charging 47%
Fuel Management 45%
Accident Management 43%
Fleet Management Software 40%
Dash Cams 34%
Fuelcards 34%
Risk Management 34%

To find out more about the Fleet Summit, visit

Fleets ‘key to unlocking an electric vehicle revolution’

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UK fleets have the potential to accelerate an electric vehicle (EV) revolution, with a shift to zero tailgate emissions generating fuel cost savings of around 63% across a fleet and significantly boosting the second hand car market.

That’s according to a new report from Cornwall Insight and PwC – “Leading the charge! Fleet charging – a catalyst for the EV revolution”, which says that with 5.3 million vehicles on the UK’s roads, fleets – a group of vehicles owned or leased by businesses – are a vital part of the transport sector. 

As the UK moves towards net zero, fleets could be a major component in this journey by leading the charge in the electric vehicle roll-out – a move that would represent half of the number of EVs expected by 2030.

The decarbonisation of the light vehicle fleet will also have a positive impact on air quality. Research in the report states that if all 5.3 million fleet vehicles were to generate zero emissions as much as 30 million tonnes of CO2 would be eliminated – around 25% of all UK transport emissions.

In evaluating the electrification of the fleet market, the report identifies which segments of the sector will be crucial to leading the EV revolution and outlining a road map that fleets may follow as they electrify.

Key findings of the report:

  • Fleet electrification is a critical catalyst that will enable the EV revolution in the UK.
  • Field services, depot-based logistics and leased corporate car fleets are likely to electrify first.
  • Government policy has a critical role to play in enabling the EV fleet transition.
  • The business models of charge point operators need to incorporate some key principles to be successful.
  • Fleet electrification providers will be an attractive opportunity for institutional investors.
  • If fleets are to maximise the opportunity of electrification, they need to take some critical and preparatory steps in designing their road map.

Not only do fleets constitute a sizeable proportion of the UK’s transport sector, but they are also responsible for more than half of new car registrations (56%) in 2019. So it is easy to see how the electrification of fleets has transformative implications for EVs.

And with a life cycle of between two to four years, fleet electrification has the potential to accelerate growth in the private, second-hand market. As fleets renew their stock, this will not only deliver greater choice and affordability for consumers but will, in turn, act as a catalyst for increased consumer adoption of EVs. Choice and affordability are still one of several barriers to EV update.

However, as the fleet electrifies, this will reinforce the need and underpin the economics of EV charging infrastructure throughout the UK. This will ensure ‘range anxiety’ does not stall the electrification of this vital segment.

On the findings of the report, Daniel Atzori, Research Partner at Cornwall Insight, said” “The electrification of fleets is set to gain momentum, driven both by sustainability commitments and by compelling economic drivers. 

“Fleets are likely to play a crucial role in the upcoming electrification of mobility and therefore in the decarbonisation of transport.

“Since fleets can ensure a high rate of utilisation of charging assets, fleet charging offers a range of interesting investment propositions. Having a clear and well-defined strategy will be crucial for fleet managers, charge point operators and investors looking to achieve leadership in this emerging market.”

Steve Jennings, PwC’s Energy and Utilities leader, said: “As well as demonstrating the appeal for investors, our report also illustrates  how utilities and charge point operators (CPOs) may play a key role in supporting EV fleet adoption, with business models evolving around advisory support to promote charging infrastructure and fine-tune electrification.

“It’s clear that field services, depot-based logistics and leased corporate car fleets have the right characteristics (such as predictable driving and charging patterns) to spearhead EV adoption.

“However pent up demand and rising levels of awareness amongst fleets is not enough to accelerate adoption.Government policy has a critical role to play. As we emerge from the current Covid-19 pandemic, alongside a strong focus on stimulating economic growth, we may see a growing emphasis on sustainability, including regulatory and strategic support for EV charging, to help address emission levels and improve air quality.

“Without policy certainty for all stakeholders across fleets, EV charging providers and investors, there is a risk that the full potential of this burgeoning EV revolution will not be realised.”

Put yourself in the driving seat at the Fleet Summit

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There’s a free pass to this September’s hybrid Fleet Summit waiting for you – will you be joining us?

Your attendance is fully complimentary and includes; overnight accommodation, access to budget-saving and innovative solution providers, LIVE seminar sessions, networking with peers, all meals and refreshments throughout.

14th & 15th September – Whittlebury Park, Northampton – Live and virtual attendance options are available.

We have a very limited number of places left – click here to confirm your free pass today.

Alternatively, you can contact us if you have any questions.

Forum Events ushers in new age of B2B networking

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Forum Events & Media Group, host of the Fleet Summit, has successfully held its first virtual networking events – with over 550 individual meetings taking place within the security industry over the course of two days via virtual events.

With live events unable to take place for the foreseeable future due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Forum has expanded its cutting-edge proprietary software to create a new interface with live video meetings. This has allowed the company to create a virtual Forum platform, taking the events experience virtual. These events allow procurement executives to source new solutions, and give suppliers the opportunity to discover new clients – and ultimately, keep industries talking.

Forum’s first virtual events were the Total Security Summit and the Security IT Summit, which both match procurement professionals with suppliers for a series of pre-arranged meetings. The Summits attracted security and cyber security professionals from the likes of Amazon, Asprey London, Associated British Foods, BNP Paribas, Department of Work & Pensions, Essex County Council, HSBC, JP Morgan, Legal and General, London Stansted Airport, Manchester Airport Group, Matalan, Marriott International, National Trust, NatWest Markets, Pret A Manger, Royal Mail, Sodexo, Tesco Mobile, United International Pictures, ViacomCBS and many more.

In addition to the virtual meetings, delegates had the opportunity to ‘attend’ streamed webinar sessions hosted by industry experts.

“The COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown restrictions associated with it have had a major impact on how we, as a nation, do business,” said Forum Events & Media Group Managing Director Sarah Beall. “Exhibitions are postponed, traditional conferences and networking events are on hold for the foreseeable future. But the wheels of commerce must keep turning and businesses need to connect, particularly during these unprecedented times as companies look for practical solutions to their challenges during the pandemic.

“Like many of our colleagues in the events sector, we have a goal to #GetBritainMeeting. The events industry is a £70 billion sector that employs 700,000 people and is currently on its knees, with no ‘go date’ yet from the Government about when we can host live events.

“The events industry is full of forward-thinking individuals who are more than capable of making controlled, organised events and exhibitions COVID-secure. But with no greenlight from the Government, we cannot sit back and wait. We are creative and innovative thinkers and, like many other events businesses, we have taken our events virtual.

“The success of our first virtual events has proved that business connections can still be made in an online environment. Over 550 meetings in two days shows the potential – and we’re looking forward to hearing back from our guests about the business deals that are made as a result of this event.”

Further virtual events are on the agenda at Forum, while going forward the company is also planning ‘hybrid’ events allowing delegates to choose whether they attend the events in person or via a digital option.

In addition, Forum Events & Media Group hosted two full-day conferences recently – the Hotel Designs LIVE event aimed at hoteliers, interior designers and architects; and the PA Life LIVE conference, which brought together Executive and Personal Assistants for a full day of learning. Both digital conferences also featured ‘supplier pitch’ sessions, allowing companies to present their products, services and solutions to the respective audiences. The Hotel Designs LIVE and PA Life LIVE digital conferences will return again in the autumn.