Dollar Thrifty adds 16 new sites nationwide
Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc., the holding company for Thrifty Car Rental and Dollar Rent a Car, has opened 16 new franchise locations in the United States since July 1, after launching 17 new sites earlier in the year (DailyVista company
These new stores are part of the Tulsa, Okla.-based car renter’s U.S. expansion plans, in addition to its continued efforts to grow its global franchise presence.
Dollar Thrifty has also added five new master licensees to its international operations this year: dual-branded franchises in Israel and Italy; a Thrifty franchise in Turks and Caicos; and a dual-branded franchise in Barbados.
“We are delighted with the number of new franchise locations in the U.S. and across the globe,” President and Chief Executive Officer Scott Thompson said on the record. “Domestic and international franchise growth is one of the keys to increasing our brands' visibility worldwide. Through our new franchise partners, we are able to offer our expanding customer base incredible value in multiple new markets, all in a capital-efficient manner.”
With these additions, Dollar and Thrifty now have more than 1,550 corporate and franchised locations in 81 countries, including 600 in the U.S. and Canada.
Last month, the company reported a third-quarter net income of $49.2 million compared to $30.1 million during the same period last year.
has plans to continually grow the franchise side of its business, while adding corporate stores domestically, but not internationally, Anna Cook, staff manager of corporate communications, told DailyVista.
“We focus on franchising for our international locations,” she stated. “Dollar and Thrifty offer master franchises outside the U.S. and Canada, generally on a countrywide basis.”
Our source couldn’t discuss the company’s marketing strategies specifically for competitive reasons, but she did say that the economic downturn has helped make its value focused brands more attractive to budget conscious travelers.
“Online marketing initiatives continue to be important with our retail customers whereas direct marketing is key in the tour and business sector of the market,” Cook acknowledged. “Lastly, word-of-mouth customer satisfaction remains one of the most powerful marketing tools for all segments.”
These strategies are aimed primarily at Dollar Thrifty’s core market: value leisure customers.
“Dollar and Thrifty are positioned as value car rental companies in the travel industry, providing on-airport convenience with low rates on quality vehicles,” our source continued. “Customers who rent from Dollar and Thrifty are cost-conscious leisure, government and business travelers who want to save money on car rentals without compromising the quality of car rental products.”
She added that the company develops its marketing initiatives in-house with input from outside agencies, and is always open to good ideas.
According to The List database, Clearwater, Fla.-based FKQ Advertising Inc. handles Dollar Thrifty’s integrated marketing, while Thrifty Car Rental specifically works with Atlanta-based The Titan Network LLC for its integrated marketing and Boulder, Colo.-based XOR Inc. for its Internet campaign efforts.
The Nielsen Company reported that Dollar Thrifty spent about $3.8 million on advertising in 2009. About $1.9 million was spent on Internet ads, about $1.4 million was spent on local newspaper ads and $250,000 was spent on spot television ads.