Fleet management provider Lex Autolease has appointed Simon Barter to head up its SME Direct division.
Replacing Tony Murtagh, Barter will oversee the development and growth of the small business function.
Previously regional director at Lex Autolease, Barter was responsible for sales, customer service delivery, key account management and delivering multi-disciplined fleet products to more than 400 customers across the south of England.
He joined the company as a sales executive in 1994 and, together with two years spent as head of corporate sales at HSBC Vehicle Finance, has more than 20 years’ corporate sales and customer service experience in vehicle leasing.
Fiona Hall, sales director at Lex Autolease, said: “Leasing company cars and vans is a practice that is well established within larger companies, but something that smaller business owners are now increasingly starting to consider over buying a vehicle outright.
“The recovery has brought greater confidence for SMEs but also a desire to do things differently, presenting us with an opportunity to educate them on the benefits of leasing.”
Barter said: “Whether it’s to save money, become more attractive in the job market, adhere to environmental or safety regulations or have access to previously unaffordable new vehicles, leasing can help small businesses address their individual challenges.
“My role will focus on helping businesses make this connection, and I’m looking forward to building relationships with both new and existing clients to ensure they capitalise on the opportunities leasing has to offer.”