Chevy Backing Driver-Ed Chain

C-E Set to Handle Top Driver’s Expansion
DETROIT–C-E Communications is gearing up for the expansion of Top Driver, a fledgling chain of driver-education operations with big plans and the support of General Motors’ Chevrolet division.
The New York-based company’s third location opens today in Greenwood, Ind., joining facilities in suburban New York and Cleveland. Plans are to open more than 200 stores nationwide, all within shopping malls, within five years, said Tracie Reihm, executive vice president and managing director at C-E in Warren, Mich.
Chevrolet has taken a sponsorship role with Top Driver, allowing it to display a Malibu sedan on-site at each of its locations, Reihm said. Two other GM subsidiaries–GMAC Financial Services and OnStar Communications–also have a presence at the sites via interactive kiosks, she said. In addition, MetLife Auto & Home insurance, based in Warwich, R.I., has a representative at each Top Driver facility offering discounts to program graduates.
The company intends to open franchised units in the future, and Chevrolet dealers will get the first opportunity to buy a franchise due to the automaker’s involvement and cooperation in opening the initial locations.
C-E’s ad support has primarily been through newspaper, radio and direct mail, although TV spots are anticipated once Top Driver has opened several locations in one market, said Terry Brophey, senior vice president and account director at C-E, which handles Chevrolet’s national advertising along with sibling agency Campbell-Ewald Advertising.
…..–Tanya Gazdik