Leasedrive to manage Mercedes' fleet business
28 May 2013
Mercedes-Benz has announced a partnership with Leasedrive, which will see the UK's largest privately owned leasing firm take on what are described as 'fleet finance operations' for the prestige German giant.
The deal commences in the autumn - although the fine details are still being thrashed out - with Leasedrive acting as Mercedes' fleet management provider, handling everything from quotes to orders to disposals across cars and light commercial vehicles up to 3.5t.
A key driver of the agreement is Mercedes' desire for the ability to offer multi-marque deals, something it isn't currently able to do, as well as Mercedes and its financial services team also being able to offer fleet management and risk management services.
Mercedes-Benz Financial Services will retain the residual value risk on all Mercedes and Smart products, while any other brands ordered will sit on the books of Leasedrive.
"We have ambitious plans for the future," said the German manufacturer's head of fleet sales Nick Andrews, restating the company's aim of becoming the UK's top premium fleet brand.
"Retaining our current customers and attracting new business in the fleet sector means delivering a relevant, high-quality, efficient and responsive service, and we're setting in place measures to ensure we hit these targets."
Leasedrive's commercial director Roddy Graham told BusinessCar that Leasedrive is "enormously proud; it's an endorsement of what we do".
Current Mercedes-Benz Financial Services customers will switch over to being managed by Leasedrive from around October, with the business, ranked 13th in the BC50 list of the UK's biggest leasing companies, managing the operation from its new premises in Solihull.
Leasedrive recently moved into the new site on Blythe Valley Park from the nearby Masterlease office that it took over as part of the deal that saw it inherit the Masterlease business in late 2010.
"Leasedrive's structure of the business and way of approaching the fleet market is very similar to ours and they are a good fit," said a Mercedes spokesman.
The manufacturer's ambitious growth targets will be fuelled by the arrival of 13 additional models into its product line-up within the next couple of years, starting with the small CLA Coupe, which is about to go on sale.
That's in addition to exiting models being updated, including the facelifted E-class also imminently on sale, and the new S-class coming late this year.