Lex Autolease, the UK’s largest provider of fleet management solutions, increased its small and medium sized customer base by 22% last year and is targeting further growth in this market.
More than 9,400 new SME business customers chose to lease or purchase their vehicles through Lex Autolease last year, which increased the total size of the company’s small and medium sized customer base to 42,000 businesses.
Based on an average asset value of £10,000 for an SME vehicle, the total amount of new funding provided by Lex Autolease to this sector during 2012 was £260m.
The growth in the number of SME business customers has been accompanied by a change in their fleet behaviour.
Sole traders and smaller firms have become more aware of the costs associated with running company vehicles and are increasingly opting for more economical and fuel efficient vehicles.
As a result the average CO2 emissions across the firm’s SME customer base fell by 10% over a two year period, from 148g/km in 2010, to 135g/km last year.
Tony Murtagh, head of SME at Lex Autolease, said: “Small and medium sized companies have a crucial role to play in helping to improve the UK’s economic fortunes.
“A large percentage of these businesses rely upon their vehicles to carry out their day to day operations and we want to provide them with the support they need to keep on the road.
“The support that we offer includes helping them to select the most appropriate type of vehicle for their business, analysing the different funding options available and guidance on how to best manage fuel costs.
“More than 40,000 SME businesses have chosen us as their vehicle partner. We want to significantly growth this figure in the forthcoming years.”