Addison Lee is London's largest minicab service, within 2,200 cars and upwards of £180m annual turnover - but it's also a minicab service unlike any other. It's built a much-feted reputation for its slick service, plush cars, and smart drivers. And if you open an account you get all that for, on average, 35% less than if you were using black cabs.
It's also got some of the most advanced technology behind it of any taxi company in the world. Journey times throughout the day can be estimated to within minutes, and it's known and loved for sending helpful texts to keep you constantly updated on when your driver is going to arrive.
John built the business from scratch after starting out training as an accountant, then dropping out his course to help salvage his father's road-building and sewer business. After taking part-time work as a minicab driver, he realised he could do a better job of running a similar business himself. He's since built up Addison Lee since the early 70s, and also set up the Private Hire Car Association in 1976.
In this entrepreneur interview, he shares his advice for small businesses, talks through his business model and use of technology, and reveals how he steadfastly avoids using credit, ever, instead paying for everything upfront - a strategy that has seen his business grow 20% in the last year, despite the recession.
Find out more about Addison Lee
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