Leaseurope launches SME Roundtable03/02/2016
Leaseurope is launching a series of roundtable meetings across Europe to discuss leasing as a key source of finance for SMEs. The aim is to explore the national SME financing landscape and improve the understanding of leasing as a valuable form of investment finance, as well as identifying any potential obstacles hindering its use by local SMEs and how these could be tackled at national and ultimately European levels.
This roundtable series marks the continuation of Leaseurope’s research initiative on leasing to European SMEs. In 2011 and 2015, Oxford Economics undertook two studies The Use of Leasing Amongst European SMEs on behalf of Leaseurope in order to better understand and quantify the importance of leasing to this key segment. Through the national SME roundtables, Leaseurope, together with its Member Associations, intends to explore the results in more detail at country level and to supplement the findings with qualitative insights from various SME stakeholders. The outcomes of these discussions will be published as a series of national case studies/summary reports.
The first roundtable was held on 15 December 2015 in Milan, organised by Leaseurope’s Italian Member, ASSILEA. More roundtables in other European countries are foreseen in 2016.
Leon Dhaene, Director General of Leaseurope, stated, “Leasing to SMEs remains a core focus area of Leaseurope’s research programme, which has been instrumental in building a comprehensive dataset and gathering market intelligence on this key client segment for our industry. I believe leveraging the findings at European level and acting locally through our Member Associations are equally important. By initiating these national roundtables, Leaseurope again contributes to the debate on SME access to finance and provides various SME stakeholders and policy makers with valuable evidence showing that leasing is a crucial form of finance for SMEs.”
Enrico Duranti, Leaseurope’s Chair and General Manager of Iccrea BancaImpressa welcomed the initiative, saying, “Our industry has a clear role to play in facilitating SME access to finance and I am pleased that ASSILEA took the opportunity to organise such a debate in Italy, where small businesses have been particularly hard-hit by the economic crisis and are in need of solutions to support their investment. We see that leasing is more popular amongst SMEs in those countries, where firms are better informed about the universal advantages of leasing and can access it through diversified distribution channels. The vendor channel, i.e. the point of sale of the asset, is particularly important, providing one-stop shop for equipment and finance. Moreover, lessors’ solid business models tailored to small businesses, as well as increased offers for small ticket items, are among the drivers of SMEs’ use of leasing.”