When the world's biggest baby swimming school, Water Babies, decided to take its vehicle fleet in-house, founder Paul Thompson struggled to think of a car more appropriate than MINI. The brand fit, the premium quality, low wholelife costs, the practical size and the sheer fun of driving made MINI the obvious and only choice.
Inspired by how much he and his wife, Jess, enjoyed teaching their own baby to swim, Water Babies began in the UK in 2002. It is now a major franchise with a growing network of family businesses teaching more than 29,000 babies to swim each week. It operates throughout the UK as well as Ireland and Sydney, Australia. "We're quite a funky brand," says Paul. "Our classes are really exciting, colourful and lively so MINI absolutely suits our character. It's fun. It's exciting. It's engaging. We've even incorporated MINI into our website and all our cars carry a Water Babies livery."
Paul also wanted to reflect the premium aspect of the company in his vehicle fleet and MINI scored on all fronts. "MINI is premium without being too expensive," adds Paul. "It represents good value for money."
Already in love with the MINI brand, franchisee Ali Pountney sees the Countryman as a great addition to the range. "The Countryman is big enough for all the kit we carry around, but it still has the great, funky MINI feel." Paul has equally high praise for the MINI Centre's he has been dealing with, and the corporate team at BMW. "The people we deal with are absolutely fantastic — as are the MINI services. I have to say MINI Connected is just the best thing. I love it!"
From a financial point of view, Water Babies finds MINl's excellent fuel economy and low CO2 emissions a major bonus as well as a major factor in their decision to choose the brand. "With all the tax implications of running a big corporate fleet, these things are really important." Paul concludes: "When I think how well MINI fits into our organisation, I actually struggle to think of other vehicles that would have done that for us."
Dick Lovett Corporate was delighted to supply new MINI Hatches and Countrymans to Paul and local Water Babies franchises, and we wish the team continued success in the future!