Global agri-business Syngenta has appointed Fleet Logistics, the independent European fleet management provider, to manage its fleet of 1,700 vehicles in 12 countries in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.

Syngenta, which is headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, employs 28,000 people in 90 countries worldwide. The company last year had worldwide sales of $15.1 billion and, through its Crop Protection and Seeds businesses, provides a fully integrated offering on a global crop basis. These are delivered through local market strategies to 19 territories in four regions: North America, Europe, Africa and Middle East, Latin America, and Asia Pacific, according to the company.

Syngenta operates around 3,600 cars in Europe, Africa, and Middle East and already works with Fleet Logistics in the UK, where it has a fleet of 155 vehicles, according to the company.

Now, under a new four-year-agreement, Fleet Logistics said it will be responsible for managing Syngenta vehicles - cars, motorcycles and buses - in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, China, Taiwan, Japan, and South Korea.

This will be supported from a newly established hub set up by Fleet Logistics in Singapore. The company’s major shareholder, international certification provider TÜV SÜD Group, has existing businesses in the region, including operations in Singapore, Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing.

Syngenta’s APAC fleet comprises mostly work cars used for grower or retailer visits, research and development field visits and production and supply sites. The rest are executive-level cars for senior managers. The vehicles are funded locally by each country and separately by each department, according to Fleet Logistics.

Shanying Chng, APAC category manager - Marketing, Professional Services, Facility, Travel and Information Systems, said the appointment of Fleet Logistics had already brought in a number of changes in the region.

“The biggest is having a professional team to help us with the sourcing, provide us with advice and develop a regional fleet policy. Internally, multiple engagements with our local country stakeholders are critical so that they understand Fleet Logistics’ role, especially as using an independent fleet management company is a new concept in APAC,“ Shanying Chng said.

The new fleet management service is designed to handle a number of issues, including fleet strategy development, fleet policy, fleet processes and external benchmarking. It will also include vehicle funding, looking at the cost benefits of leasing versus outright purchase, along with the sourcing of third party contracts such as car leasing and fuel cards, according to Fleet Logistics.

The success of the new arrangement will be measured by return on investment, with targeted savings of 1:3 for all full-scope services in APAC countries. Savings are expected to come from sourcing renegotiation and from regional fleet policy reviews, according to Fleet Logistics.