31 oct 18

The Australian car leasing picture

The Australian car leasing industry, or Fleet Management organisations, as they’re called locally, started off with OEMs and banks offering leasing services to their clients. When banking regulations became more severe, the banks started to divest their car leasing activities.

Captives have been around for a longer time, but with the disappearance of manufacturing in Australia, they’re no longer playing an essential role in the FMO landscape, except for Toyota Fleet Management, a multi-brand FMO that has, under guidance of its CEO Ed Stanistreet, grown to become one of the major players on the market.

Generic service offering

Most of the FMOs offer a fully comprehensive package of products and services on the Australian market. Novated Lease and salary packaging (cash for car and other employee benefits) are obviously included – a must on the Australian market – but also fleet procurement and disposal services are offered for those fleets who prefer to use their own funding.

Both operating lease and finance lease are usually available. Some of the lessors makes a point of environmentally friendly cars and has a service to guide the client from ICE to electric. Finally, many suppliers offers telematics services.

It is not uncommon to see FMOs offer services not only to large car fleets, but also to small fleets, and clients in need of truck and equipment finance.

Global players, local heroes

Most of the big players are present in Australia, be it sometimes not with the same brand name as in other regions. An overview of some key players

  • Custom Fleet was purchased by GE Capital in 2006 from National Australia Bank. In 2015, when GE decided to move away from the leasing industry, the Canadian giant Element acquired Custom Fleet.
  • Summit Fleet started off as a dealership group first, but became quickly an important player. Its name is composed of SUMitomo MITsui, one of the Japanese leaders in the car leasing business.
  • LeasePlan plays a dominant role on the market and confirms its omnipresence by offering an extensive service offering in Australia and New Zealand.
  • Eclipx Group is a holding group owning various companies in the Fleet Management industry, such as FMOs FleetPartners, fleetplus, FleetChoice and peripheral businesses, such as Georgie (car sourcing), Right2Drive (assistance) and Autoselect (remarketing).
  • McMillian Shakespeare is extremely strong in salary packaging, but originated from Holden Leasing, which became Interleasing before being integrated in McMillian Shakespeare.
  • SG Fleet is one of the top players in the market. Next to acquisitions, (NLC in 2015), SG was also part of the PHH ARVAL Global Alliance.
  • The Japanese ORIX have been on the market as ORIX Australia since 1986. Its current CEO, Reggie Cabal, was one of the speakers at the Global Fleet Conference in Rome this year.

Promising future

The leasing market is growing at a rate of 6% to 7% per year and industry leaders believe that the peak hasn’t been reached yet. 

Authored by: Yves Helven