SPARKS, MD - Since March 1, regular gas prices in the U.S. have increased 11 percent per gallon, and OPEC’s average per-barrel price of crude oil has gone up 21 percent.

The rising price of fuel is just one reason fleet management companies need to look beyond traditional methods to help clients manage operating costs, according to George Kilroy, president and CEO of PHH Arval. “Managing fuel buying patterns is not enough to drive down fuel costs,” says Kilroy. “To significantly reduce costs, fleets need to reduce fuel consumption. Telematics has the potential to play an important role in achieving that goal."

When Kilroy assumes his post as chairman of the new company created by the proposed merger of PHH Arval and GE Capital Solutions Fleet Services, he expects to accelerate development of innovative services in areas with the greatest impact on helping customers.

“Our customers look to us for new ideas and solutions to manage costs. Telematics, for example, is one of the most exciting opportunities we have not only to drive down operating costs, but to positively impact the productivity and safety of fleet drivers,” says Kilroy, who expects telematics services to be among the new company’s top product development priorities.

“Both GE Capital Solutions Fleet Services and PHH have been developing telematics services,” says Kilroy. “When we come together, we will be able to concentrate our investments, engage our combined intellectual resources, and drive telematics and other innovations forward with greater speed to benefit our customers.”