The managing director of Marshall Leasing, Peter Cakebread, will be retiring on April 30 after 30 years at the helm, the business has confirmed.
Cakebread joined the business in November 1990 and has been instrumental in establishing Marshall Leasing as a leading FN50 company.
James McGee, managing director of Northridge Finance, said: “Thanks to Peter’s direction and drive, Marshall Leasing has been recognised by Fleet News and other industry bodies as being exceptional.
“He stands as one of the industry’s leading experts and this is reflected in the numerous industry awards he has received. His most recent award was the BVRLA Freddie Aldous Outstanding Contribution Award.”
Fleet News inducted Cakebread into its Hall of Fame in 2014 in recognition of his services to the fleet and leasing industry.
The Bank of Ireland (UK) subsidiary Northridge Finance acquired the Marshall Leasing business in December 2017.
"We have built a business with a great reputation for dedication to customer service,” Peter Cakebread, Marshall Leasing
McGee says he met Cakebread at an initial meeting in May 2017 when he first became aware that the Marshall business could be acquired.
“After that initial meeting, we were convinced that Marshall Leasing would be a good acquisition given the wide expertise demonstrated by Peter, but most importantly the very clear values he shared with Northridge,” he said.
“Since then, Marshall Leasing has proven to be a sound acquisition, integrating fully within Bank of Ireland in a short time.
“Peter has led the business professionally and patiently during these three years and the level of change during this period for the Marshall team shouldn’t be understated.”
McGee said that Cakebread is a “true icon” within the leasing industry and a “genuine gentleman” who has become a real friend.
“He will leave us with a really strong business set for future growth and built on very solid foundations,” he added.
Jonathan Ross, sales and marketing director at Marshall Leasing, continued: “Which came first, Marshall Leasing or Peter? The two are so interlinked.
“Like many innovative businesses, the personality of its leader is hugely influential, not only within its culture, but also on its results.
“Marshall Leasing has always enjoyed a high-profile stature within the contract hire fleet industry. This is, in no small measure, down to the reputation and influence of its leader within industry circles.
“I know that shareholders past and present, customers and colleagues both in house and out, will all pay tribute to Peter and want to join him in celebrating his truly successful career.
“We will all miss him deeply but wish him the happiest and most richly deserved retirement spent with his wife Jane.”
Cakebread has enjoyed a 40-year career in the fleet sector, having started out fresh from Cambridge University on a graduate trainee program at Heron.
After a short period as a director at Norfolk Finance, he joined Marshall Leasing in 1990 and soon surrounded myself with like-minded colleagues, many of whom are still with the business 30 years later.
“Together, we have built a business with a great reputation for dedication to customer service,” he said.
“Marshall Leasing has been my passion and through my involvement with the BVRLA, including a two-year stint as chairman, I have contributed to the development of the industry I love.
“At Marshall Leasing, our approach to business has been to offer flexibility in the delivery of our services, based around a ‘common sense ethos’. This has proved to be attractive to a wide range of clients, many of whom have become friends over the years.
“We have benefited from industry leading levels of staff retention, with colleagues genuinely enjoying our family-style work environment rooted in our Marshall of Cambridge heritage. This is my proudest achievement - creating a genuine customer centric culture, in which teams can thrive.”
On the change in ownership from Marshall Motor Group to the Bank of Ireland’s Northridge Finance, Cakebread said this had been “helped enormously” by a shared customer-focused strategy and by the “tireless support” provided by the Northridge team.
“I have truly been blessed to spend my career with great people, in an intellectually stimulating industry and one in which I have enjoyed a lot of fun, alongside the success,” he said.
“Now seems an appropriate time for me to retire and hand over the reins to the next generation. The business is strong, growing and well-structured to meet the challenges of the next stage in its evolution. I am leaving with a great many fantastic memories, and enduring friendships.”