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AA Insurance to work with new SMART repair shop

Auckland – 20 March 2014 – AA Insurance today announced that a new SMART shop would become part of its repairer network in Auckland. SMART (Small to Medium Accident Repair Technology) shops are specially designed to deliver high quality repairs within industry leading timeframes.

AA Insurance says it’s about getting customers back on the road sooner.

“This is a great initiative for customers in Auckland,” said Suzanne Wolton, Head of Customer Relations, AA Insurance. “For some repair jobs, our customers will be back on the road even sooner. Our customers will continue to go through our Customer Service Centres where the cars will be assessed. To be suitable for the SMART shop, cars must be driveable with no structural or mechanical damage. The work will be shared amongst our Quality Repairer Network, with the SMART shop being part of that mix.”
“As a result of continued growth in our market share, we are experiencing an ever-increasing volume of claims,” said Suzanne. “We needed to increase our repair capacity, and the SMART shop is a perfect fit to complement our existing suppliers, while continuing to provide high quality repairs backed with our Lifetime Repair Guarantee.”

“Our relationship with our existing quality repairers is central to our collision repair work, and this is very important to us,” said Suzanne. “We do not expect the introduction of a SMART shop into our Quality Repairer Network to have any significant impact on our existing repairers.”

The new SMART shop will be used exclusively by AA Insurance, and owned and operated by Capital SMART, an Australian based company. Capital SMART is a joint venture with the Suncorp Group.

“Suncorp Group is one of AA Insurance’s two shareholders. We want to leverage the opportunities for innovation that both our shareholders offer. However it’s important to know that AA Insurance itself has no ownership or financial interest in Capital SMART or the SMART shop,” says Suzanne.

The Auckland SMART shop is expected to open later this year.


SMART shops:
• SMART shops started in Australia and are based on the concept of getting cars with minor damage back on the road sooner.
• SMART shops were the brainchild of Australia repairer Jim Vais. A veteran repairer who started working in the industry more than two decades ago, he developed the concept after years of research and testing.
• There are currently 25 SMART shops operating in Australia, and they have been successfully running since 2007.
• To be suitable for the SMART shop, cars must be driveable with no structural or mechanical damage.
• Once a car enters the repair process workflow, it is worked on continuously through to completion. This, alongside the new painting system, creates a more efficient repair process while maintaining repair quality.

About AA Insurance
AA Insurance was launched in 1994 and is a joint venture between New Zealand Automobile Association and Vero New Zealand, which is part of the Suncorp Group.

We employ around 580 staff servicing more than 300,000 customers and manage over 500,000 motor, home and contents insurance policies.

AA Insurance was named as New Zealand’s best workplace at the 2011 Kenexa (formerly JRA) Best Workplaces Survey, winning the overall award and the large company category, and from 2008 to 2013 has consistently been a finalist.

AA Insurance was named winner of the 2013 Canstar Blue Most Satisfied Customers for Home and Contents Insurance, as well winning the award for Car Insurance for the third consecutive year.

We were also voted Most Trusted Insurer by New Zealanders in the 2011 and 2012 Insurance Providers category and the 2013 General Insurer category of the Reader’s Digest Most Trusted Brands survey, and received the 2012 and 2013 New Zealand Insurance Industry Award for Direct Insurer of the Year.

We are proud to support youth charity Blue Light as its principle corporate sponsor, as well as the Holden Cup and NRL Telstra Premiership referees during New Zealand home matches.

AA Insurance Limited has an A+ (Strong) Insurer Financial Strength Rating given by Standard and Poor’s (Australia) Pty Ltd. For further information visit

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