Wednesday, September 15, 2010

...they make HOW much?

I managed to infiltrate a Speed Awareness Course on Tuesday this week...

A friend had got a speeding ticket for doing 36mph in a 30 zone and got offered the course rather than the points because it was deemed to be “marginal speeding”.

I don’t want to get her in trouble with anyone so I’ll re-name her “Amy”.

I was staying at Amy and her partner's house on Monday night and even though it meant getting up early, I couldn’t pass up the chance of trying to ‘sneak in’ to the course.

first thing that struck me was that the tone of the trainer was really patronising on arrival.

He was actually a pretty nice bloke but it seemed to me that it was designed to be systematically patronising, maybe to get people to take it seriously or something...

He greeted the 21 attendees - in my view - like young children who had been naughty.

second thing that struck me was the fact that the course was being run by a PRIVATE COMPANY, called AA Drivetech.

I must admit that I was surprised the AA would want to associate itself with the
third thing I noticed...

Which was
how much money they must be making from running this course.

Here is the mental calculation I was doing while the naughty people were being told off...

21 people attended.

They paid about £62 each.

That’s £1302 or £1073.80 after VAT.

The organisers costs were 6 jugs of water, 21 disposable cups, 21 cups of coffee.

Call that £10.

Then the venue -- I reckon £100 for 4 hours.

Then the trainer -- again I reckon £100.

So if that’s right then it gives a
profit of £863.80 ...from ONE VENUE!

I spoke to the trainer afterwards and he said that the courses are run
every day, and there were 3 happening that day in the county we were in day (I won't mention the county so as not to identify Amy).

He didn’t know how many are run in total but he said that “3 per country, per day” sounded about right.

I should say here that in some counties the council run the course.

But AA Drivetech operate in Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Derbyshire, Hampshire & Isle of Wight, London, Northern Ireland, Northumbria, North Wales, North Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire, Suffolk, Surrey and Thames Valley.

That’s 13 counties. So the maths as I work it out is:

Each course = £800 profit.

Times 3 per day = £2400.

Times 13 counties = £31,200.

Times 7 days per week = £218,400.

Times 50 weeks a year = £10,920,000

Ten Million, Nine Hundred and Twenty Thousand Pounds profit.

With hindsight they could have probably have afforded to give us some biscuits :-)

All the best,


P.S. "Amy" is now a DriveProtect Member :-)