Leasing market grows by 14 percent

THE SLOVAK leasing market grew last year in line with expectations, with an aggregate volume of new contracts of €1.848 billion, an annual increase of 14.4 percent, while the number of new contracts rose 1 percent to 66,578. The market was driven by leasing of machinery and facilities, trucks and real estate.

THE SLOVAK leasing market grew last year in line with expectations, with an aggregate volume of new contracts of €1.848 billion, an annual increase of 14.4 percent, while the number of new contracts rose 1 percent to 66,578. The market was driven by leasing of machinery and facilities, trucks and real estate.

The share of financial and operating leasing products increased to the detriment of loans and instalment sales and this was linked to a significant increase in financing by corporations as the consumer segment registered a moderate decrease, the Association of Leasing Companies of the Slovak Republic (ALS) announced in a press release on March 3.

“The growth of the overall market reached 14 percent but this figure was positively affected by one-off deals in financing alternative energy-producing facilities,” wrote Juraj Ebringer, the chair of the ALS board of directors. “After this impact is taken into consideration, the growth was up to 10 percent.”

According to Ebringer, both numbers were in line with ALS’ expectations and the association expects single-digit growth in the leasing market in 2012 to be driven by business clients, especially in segments of passenger cars, machinery and facilities.

The segment of machinery and facilities registered the highest annual increase in leasing deals, up 47 percent to €431 million.

The association pointed out that purchasing and funding for some technologies are still affected by falling demand in the wood processing industry, the health-care sector and construction, but that other sectors posted growth.

Besides renewable energy sources, new deals were stronger in the engineering and agriculture sectors.

The second most important segment for was for trucks of over 3.5 tons, with an increase of 29 percent to €339.2 million.

Leasing of passenger cars rose by 10.1 percent to a volume of €767.5 million, with a 14-percent increase among corporate customers and 3-percent growth among individuals.

The real estate segment reported growth of 26 percent to €153 million.

“Last year’s growth in the leasing market in all of Europe was at about 7 percent while the countries of central and eastern Europe registered an increase of over 30 percent,” wrote Ebringer.

In the financing of non-fixed, movable assets, operating leasing showed the best numbers, with volume in this area increasing by 24 percent. The financial leasing segment finished with 17-percent growth.

The volume of deals of these two kinds of leasing products increased to about two-thirds of the total.

The volume of loans and instalment scheme purchases increased only moderately, by 7 percent.

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