Intelligent Motoring launched in 2016, initially as MotorEasy, but our history and values stretch back to the 1990s as a pioneer in direct-to-consumer extended car warranties.
When Duncan McClure Fisher launched MotorEasy's predecessor Warranty Direct back in 1997, it was one of the first companies to offer a direct to customer (D2C) car warranty. Prior to that, warranties were only available via car dealers when a car buyer purchased a new or second-hand car.
His aim at the time was to cut out the middleman, enabling warranties to be sold at a lower price, with a higher level of cover protection. He also wanted to give used car owners the same kind of protection and worry-free motoring that was available to new car owners.
Fast forward to the launch of MotorEasy in 2016, that same founding mission remained true, albeit with a business model centred on a full suite of products and solutions across the car-ownership lifecycle. Its aim: to help car owners save time, money and hassle on all their day to day vehicle needs.
Building Efficiency and Effectiveness
As a group, the story of Intelligent Motoring's growth has been one of “value chain” extension; finding synergies across products and business units while dovetailing sales, marketing and technology, to cross-sell the right product at the right time.
It’s a process that self generates new data-points, creating a virtuous cycle of deeper customer relationships. An organic approach that has inherent strengths as an integrated system.
As the platform grew, IM's workshop and policy protection business fed one another, both in terms of direct work referrals and data insights that triggered customer conversations. It also proved a model that could be replicated as a B2B offering via Warranty Assist, as well as extended to a range of industry partners bringing new swathes of car owners.
Behind this business approach, the individual brands within Intelligent Motoring have progressively invested in their marketing to build customer awareness and trust. MotorEasy for example, a regular advertiser on television and other above-the-line channels, as well as a sponsor of industry events such as the annual What Car? Car of the year awards.
The journey to date is just the start of the story, with key dates detailed below.
A Timeline of Growth
Duncan McClure Fisher and his father, David set up Warranty Direct in Caversham, near Reading, as the UK’s only direct-to-consumer warranty company.
Warranty Direct began supplying car warranties and all-inclusive motoring plans to Telegraph readers.
Warranty Direct started up Dealer Warranty Direct to provide better car warranties to dealerships and also introduced extended warranties for household appliances .
Warranty Direct moved to Broad Street Mall in Reading, and was subsequently sold to the French bank, BNP Paribas.
Duncan left Warranty Direct and after a few years, came back to the industry with bigger and better ideas.
The business had successfully achieved 30% growth for many years and Duncan decided it was time to move on to pastures new.
Duncan set up the new MotorEasy business with the aim to provide vehicle owners a simple and hassle-free online platform to manage and protect their vehicle. Initially the new company offered extended car warranties, but the acquisition of Motor Angel allowed it to also offer service, maintenance, repairs and MOT plans. The year-end saw the launch of its first insured product – Battery Insurance.
Warranty Assist, the online dealer warranty platform was acquired and MotorEasy introduced GAP insurance as an addition to its ever-increasing portfolio. It also saw the start of the long-term sponsorship of ‘Driving Entertainment’ on the television station Dave.
Alloy Wheel, Cosmetic and Tyre Insurances were introduced, and we launched our first warranty TV advert. Based around the ‘Night Rider’ talking car concept, it positioned MotorEasy as the smart way to run your car, with Smart and Easy Car Warranties with MotorEasy.
MotorEasy agrees a charitable partnership with Build Africa, working closely with the Kenyan government to build 4 classes in a primary school over the following 2 years .
MotorEasy teamed up with Haynes Manuals to create the world first Parts Only Warranty.
MotorEasy become the UK's first extended warranty provider to offer an electric vehicle warranty, including drive battery protection.
MotorEasy acquired Motokiki, the comparison website designed to help customers find the right tyres from local garages at the best prices.
MotorEasy teamed up with What Car? For the What Car? Car of the Year Awards.
MotorEasy agree a partnership with Tempcover, providing a MototEasy branded temporary insurance product via its web site and digital garage.
Intelligent Motoring was created as a parent company, made up of our core businesses: MotorEasy, Motor Angel, Warranty Assist and Motokiki.
MotorEasy signs a partnership with Halfords, to supply white label warranties via halfords.com
A partnership is reached with Zuto, who as an Industry Appointed Representative, are able to introduce MotorEasy warranties, GAP Insurance and other motoring services to Zuto customers.
We reached over half a million members and over 6,000 TrustPilot reviews!
MotorEasy and Intelligent Motoring agree a suite of new partnerships including:
- A white label GAP solution for Close Brothers
- White label and cobrand warranty solutions for Arval
- A white label service and MOT booking solution for GoCompare
- A white label warranty offering to Innovation Automotive, an importer of Chinese electric vehicles
MotorEasy partnered with What Car? for the second time to sponsor the What Car? Car of the Year Awards
Partnership sucess stories continue, including:
- In January, AA Ireland launch a white label version of IM's Workshop Trading Platform, as part of a strategy to build an SMR capabity across Ireland. In July, the partnership extends, providing an IM-adminsitered white label warranty solution to dealers operating under their "AA Cars" business.
- An agreement is reached with Asda to sell a white label warranty product via its web site asdamotoring.co.uk
- A new partnership with carwow is agreed, offering GAP Insurance and a "warranty wrap" product to individuals who purchase a car via the carwow web site.
- An extended agreement with Halfords, who following the success of its MotorEasy warranty programme, agree to also promote IM GAP, alloy and cosmetic insurance.
- An extended Agreement with Tempcover, who in September start introducing MotorEasy GAP Insurance to customers who purchase "driveaway" temporary insurance when purchasing a new vehicle.
In September, IM and Haymarket Publishing announce that MotorEasy is to return as headline sponsors of the What Car? Car of the Year awards, in January 2024