BSM leaves the high street


The British School of Motoring (BSM) is to close its high street network due to changes in the way people book driving lessons.

The Aviva-owned business says it will replace its 107 outlets with a centralised sale and service operation by December next year. Its products will be sold on the internet and through a call centre instead.

Marketing director Shaun Meadows has previously said he wants to overhaul the brand and ramp up marketing spend in an attempt to become a "sexy" youth brand that also appealed to parents (MW September 7).

The news comes as Aviva-owned Norwich Union, the UK’s largest insurer, announces 4,000 job losses following the merger of its life and general insurance businesses. A spokesman for the company says "only a few" marketing posts will be lost in Norwich and York.

The company cut a swathe of marketing posts last year, after its £1.1bn acquisition the RAC motoring services company (MW August 17, 2005). Aviva closed the RAC’s 60-strong marketing department but created 30 new positions at its Norwich office. Commercial director David Lewis had already left the company, after his role was scrapped (MW July 7, 2005).

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