Simon is one of Britain's leading independent PR advisors.
Bringing a wealth of experience to the role spanning more than 25 years, he began his career as a journalist and editor on major news and business to business publications. After moving into PR, he now works with everyone from the world's largest multinationals to ambitious start-ups - and companies of every size in-between.
Simon is the founder and managing director of Paperchase.
His approach to PR has always been driven purely by results - and he achieves these by consistently adopting an approach which is as proactive as it is innovative. In short, he keeps the aims of his clients and the requirements of journalists - be they broadcast, print or online - at the heart of this process.
Simon has worked with companies operating in most sectors: from manufacturing to public services and retail to professional services. In addition, he is acknowledged to have industry-leading expertise in the automotive sector. Simon's detailed knowledge of the issues and personalities driving both the motor trade and fleet industries are widely recognised to be second to none.
But quite apart from advising hundreds of companies worldwide on their PR strategies, he has also been involved in his own successful business start-ups. Consequently, he brings great strategic knowledge to his role which reaches well beyond the boundaries of PR and general marketing. As a result, he is often used by clients as a source of business advice and ideas.
Current and past Paperchase clients include GE Capital, Glass’s Guide, Arval, RAC, epyx, iVendi, Microban, Chevin Fleet Solutions, Chartered Accountants Benevolent Association, The Warranty Group, AA Tyre Fit, TLS Vehicle Rental, CFC Solutions, Holland and Barrett, Churchill Tableware and Pinewood Computer Solutions.
Here, you will find testimonials from clients and a selection of recent press releases, social media activity and more.
Current and previous clients include
Simon has an excellent grasp of the issues affecting our industry and is able to take those messages to the media in a very effective manner.
Ian Simpson Automotive Managing Director.
The Warranty Group
As a relatively new business, we are very keen to take our message to market and make it heard by the right people. Simon has helped us identify what is newsworthy about Startline and made sure that we gained coverage in the right media.
Paul Burgess CEO, Startline Motor Finance
As a relatively new company, we have been very keen to make some noise about our products and capabilities, and Simon has played a key role in helping to establish us as a credible voice in the marketplace.
James Tew CEO.
The latest news and releases from Paperchase PR
Below are recent press releases from Paperchase Public Relations. Please click on the headline to download.
The results of the first-ever iVendi Report on Online Motor Retailing are published today, providing probably the most detailed and credible insight yet into this rapidly growing area of the motor industry.
James Tew, CEO, said: “This independent research, undertaken with the help of APD Global Research, fills what we believe to be a gap in quality information about one of the fastest growing and potentially most important areas of the motor industry.
“It looks in detail at the views and the plans of new and used car buyers, car dealers and motor manufacturers, illustrating their attitudes towards online motor retail today and into the next few years.
“The overarching message from all three groups is that online motor retail is set to grow, probably rapidly and substantially, with increased investment from dealers and manufacturers, and increased trust and activity on the part of consumers.
“Importantly, all agree that dealer networks will remain essential part of the process.”
Highlights of the results include:
- 79% say they would be “confident” or “completely confident” about buying a car online
- 57% believe that motor retail lags behind the best online retail experiences
- 87% indicate that visiting a car showroom is an important part of the buying process
- 52% believe that customers would buy a car from them entirely online and 6% offer this option currently
- 43% plan to increase their online retail activity in the next 18 months
- 83% say it remains important for the customer to visit the showroom
- 33% plan to offer the option to buy and finance a car online within the next 18 months
- 73% say that they will be increasing their investment in this area
- 81% believe that their existing dealer networks should be involved in online retail
They currently see car supermarkets as their biggest online competition but, in the future, foresee it becoming digital marketplaces such as Amazon.
James Tew added: “These findings act as an important counterweight to some of the more outlandish claims that have been made about how online retail will change the motor industry. It shows that yes, online retail will become much more important and relatively quickly so – but it also indicates a future where the dealer remains a key element of the buying process.
“What consumers want, it indicates, is a high degree of flexibility. To construct their own buying process that may be entirely online or entirely at the dealer – but is much more likely to combine the two in whichever way they desire.”
James said that that the attitudes shown by the three groups surveyed provided an insight into the opportunities and challenges that the sector faced.
“Consumers are comfortable with online retailing and finance when considering a car but they have concerns based around the requirement for security, the need to see the physical vehicle and the desire for ease of experience. The dealer is still perceived as important in the sales process for a new car.
“The dealer is keen to maximise sales and believes that getting consumers into their showroom will support this but also wants to meet consumers needs and improve the overall sales experience, so are evolving their online offerings.
“Finally, manufacturers want the highest sales and brand profile at the lowest cost, and view online as an important way of achieving this. Plus, they see the need to compete with other retailers online, from car supermarkets to digital marketplaces.”
Report news summary
For consumers, the main advantage of online retailing was seen to be convenience and ease of shopping around and, when asked who provided the best online retail experience, Amazon was widely cited. The clothes and fashion, and consumer technology, sectors were seen as the most advanced for the online experience and the car sector being well behind the others, ranked at fifth.
When asked about general confidence regarding online security for a large purchase, 61% responded positively and said that they may choose to buy a car entirely online. For online car finance, this confidence rose higher still.
The main barriers to buying a car online related to the desire to see and test drive the car as well as the security aspect while, for financing a vehicle online, the barriers related to confidence and security. The positive factors making consumers more likely to buy and finance a car online were seen to be “trust in brand” followed by the lifestyle factors of a non-pressurised sale and convenience.
The role of a dealership visit as part of the buying experience was stated as important with 87% of consumers likely to visit a showroom to see and test drive a vehicle and ask questions.
Of the dealers surveyed, a majority thought that consumers would appreciate the option of buying and financing a car entirely online, and that this kind of activity would increase, particularly in the next 12-18 months. Twenty eight per cent felt they were ahead or fully ready to offer car retailing and finance fully online with a further 29% building solutions at the moment.
Dealers were aware that online retailing would have an impact on how the motor industry retails to consumers and were keen to offer more online services. Those actively building solutions in the area say the top three areas of investment are video overviews of vehicles, car searches and live chat. However, it was still important (84%) to them that a customer visit their showrooms
Almost half of the manufacturers surveyed already offer the option to buy a car on their web site or agree that the technology is now available to offer this facility. Half of the remainder intend to do so. They see the opportunities of more brand visibility and believe it will bring new consumers. All but one manufacturer envisaged a role for the dealer network in this process, but they also see their dealers as a potential barrier to digital sales combined, alongside a lack of consumer interest.
Notes on the report
This report was compiled from online interviews conducted between the 21st March and the 9th April 2018.
We interviewed three key audiences for the research – dealers, consumers and motor manufacturers - to understand the online retail marketplace in more detail. There were 51 Dealer interviews, covering a range of different dealer structures and sizes, 304 consumer interviews with consumers who had a stated intention to buy a new car in the next 12 months and 11 manufacturer interviews, talking to individuals that were in roles looking at buying strategy and future buying models for cars.
There was a general section at the start of the questionnaire looking at attitudes to online retailing and security and then three separate sections relating to the different audiences.
About APD Global Research
APD Global Research is a leading specialist in automotive customer experience, business intelligence and bespoke research supported by industry specialist account teams. With office locations in the UK and Australia, its award-winning portfolio of innovative feedback capture, data analytics and online reporting platforms are in daily use by over 20 of the leading manufacturer, remarketing and leasing sector brands worldwide.
Supporting the activities of its research division APD’s team of internal strategists offer industry analysis and insight into the underlying trends that impact business performance and profitability.
Founded in 2009, iVendi makes e-commerce solutions that make vehicle selling easier for dealers, vehicle buying easier for buyers, and vehicle finance easier for all. With offices in Manchester and Colwyn Bay and products connected to more than 7,000 dealer locations in the UK, iVendi believes in innovating to deliver results.
For further details, please contact Simon Wells at Paperchase Public Relations on 07768 912430 or email@example.com