10-minutes podcast with Hans Kolff

Recently Business Lease International together with Fleet Europe Magazine, created a 10-minute video podcast. During the Covid19 pandemic and its aftermath we find that many companies are searching for better and more flexible partners to help them manage their fleets, locally as well as on a European level. Hans Kolff, International Sales Director at Business Lease, explains how important the consultancy role is between Business Lease and its customers and prospects.

 

Multiple fleet solutions underway in Central and Eastern Europe

Companies are investigating how they fund and manage their vehicles in the aftermath of coronavirus.

The disruption of the pandemic has prompted many businesses in Central Europe to review their fleet operations, and in particular how they finance their vehicles. In the face of economic uncertainty, fleet decision makers are exploring the advantages and disadvantages of different funding solutions from the perspective of cash flow, tax, and risk, as well as weighing the benefits of outsourced against in-house fleet management.

These reviews are complex and gain hugely from the support of a partner with expertise in the local markets, such as Business Lease, which has offices in Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia.

Some examples

The different approaches adopted by a few new Business Lease clients in the region provide clear examples of how fleet solutions are individual to the companies they serve. While both companies are switching from purchasing to operational leasing, the first has decided on a gradual process, only replacing cars aged four years and older with new lease vehicles. Its transition to leasing will take three years and, in the meantime, Business Lease will provide full fleet management services as it integrates with the customer’s processes and drivers.

The second fleet has decided on a sale and leaseback of cars under one year old and will replace its older cars with leased models when they reach four years of age. In this case, the transition to operational leasing will only take two years, but we will be delivering fleet management services from day one, so all drivers will get to know Business Lease. This customer also opted for partial electrification.

Transitioning to other powertrains such as to electric vehicles also underline the importance of working with a supplier with in-depth local knowledge.

Figures published in September by ACEA, the European vehicle manufacturers’ association, revealed that Poland has only 0.4 public chargers per 100km of road, compared to 47.5 chargers per 100km in the Netherlands. The situation is little better in Romania (0.5 chargers per 100km), and while the trajectory towards electrification is common across Europe, the speed of development differs enormously. This is an important consideration for any businesses looking to make commitments to zero emission vehicles and have offices in Central and Eastern European countries.

Partial Electrification based on facts

Business Lease uses its E-Mobility QuickScan tool to identify which vehicles of a client’s fleet could transition to battery power without compromising business operations, considering driver route profiles and their local and regional charging infrastructure.

Finally, with the economic impact of coronavirus still hard to forecast, some companies are opting for a more flexible approach to employee mobility while they assess their recruitment needs and future growth prospects. Business Lease has developed a long-term rental solution for these customers, keeping employees mobile during their trial periods, and avoiding long-term vehicle commitments until the dust settles on the pandemic.

Contact Business Lease to receive the updated E-mobility Fact Sheet, showing you the latest data about electric vehicle adoption and charge point infrastructure in Central Europe vs. West Europe. Go to www.businesslease.com or for more information e-mail e.korver@businesslease.com.

Plug-in hybrids enable fleets in Central Europe to set on the path to E-mobility

Plug-in hybrids are an excellent choice to get started on the path towards our electric future. Offering many of the advantages of battery-electric vehicles but without some of the disadvantages, they have much going for them. That’s no different in Central Europe.

At the moment, the uptake of electric cars is low in Central Europe. In Hungary, 0.29% of the national fleet is electric, compared to a whopping 15.83% in Norway. The numbers are growing, though, and will continue to grow over the next few years.

From a financial point of view, electric cars can certainly make sense. They benefit from tax incentives, even though those are often modest in Central Europe. But, as more affordable models are being added to the market, they are brought within reach of more fleets.

BEVs and PHEVs are also an important tool to meeting CO2 emission targets, particularly useful for companies bound by international car policies.

Growing charging networks

Electric cars have lower running costs and charging them with electricity is typically cheaper than filling up with diesel or petrol (unless you only use fast chargers). Central Europe is making great strides towards rolling out a broad charging network. Poland, for instance, doubled its charging infrastructure in only one year’s time – admittedly, from a low base.

Until charging infrastructure gets more widespread, the case for plug-in hybrids is very strong. In the large cities it is usually fine but making trips in other, more rural areas, you find charging facilities are still sparse. In most Central European countries, tax benefits for PHEVs are in place but they do let you run on petrol (some models also on diesel) if you run out of electric juice. When an infrastructure has not matured yet, the flexibility that a combination of an electric engine and internal combustion engine offer, opens the door to E-mobility for everyone!

However, PHEVs should be charged as often as you can to avoid turning them into a more expensive petrol car. It also helps to try and charge at normal chargers as much as possible, because electricity delivered by fast chargers is far more expensive.

Expertise and profiling

Adding PHEVs to the fleet requires specialist knowledge and expertise. Different markets have different tax incentives and charging infrastructure maturity varies widely, too. Importantly, you need to analyze a driver’s needs and habit to ensure the car matches the driver’s travel behavior and needs Based on usage, costs and range, Business Lease looks at the direct and indirect costs and gives customers substantiated advice.

At Business Lease, dedicated teams understand the ins and outs of E-mobility. They know what incentives are available in each market, what vehicles make most sense for what drivers and they can also connect you with partners to install chargers for reduced tariffs.

Find out more on our website or get in touch with one of our International team members for more information: www.businesslease.com/international