Mike Bailey, CAVA Finance 0161 222 9599
Commercial, News

Covid 19 has certainly impacted the motor industry as a whole, with some sectors which rely heavily on vehicle use suffering more than others. CAVA Finance has seen first-hand the detrimental impact this has had, in particular on the private hire industry. With coach, minibus and taxi firms seeing disruption to their usual service levels due to lack of holiday travel, events and commuters.

 

We were intrigued to see if any other areas in which CAVA Finance supports, have had a different experience throughout the last year and so have explored how the pandemic has impacted those using commercial vehicles.

 

Whilst transport services are of course essential, with schools closed, travel banned and people working from home, there has been an impact on demand and need for these services.

 

However, we’ve seen a huge increase in digital economy during 2020, in light of the ‘Stay Home’ rule. With the majority of shops closed, consumers have been opting for online shopping and as a result home delivery services have soared.

 

Restaurants and small businesses have been able to stay afloat by offering an alternative way to provide for their customers, whether that’s via pre-packaged meal kits or takeaway delivery services.

 

Forbes are predicting that this won’t be a temporary shift in behaviour and that our online buying habits will continue, as will the demand for high quality delivery services.

 

How did 2020 impact delivery services?

 

As with many industries facing huge changes, delivery services struggled at the start of lockdown with changes to demand, staff shortages and new restrictions.

 

2020 saw millions of consumers changing their purchasing habits due to shop closures and as such the demand for home delivery soared. Companies such as Ocado saw a 1000% increase in website traffic and third-party delivery services such as Deliveroo have further capitalised on the market.

 

But it wasn’t just food that dominated deliveries. Our love of online shopping has been a growing trend for the past few years, with research from Mintel showing a 12% increase in courier and delivery sales from 2018-2019, a 62% increase since 2014 and currently exceeding a worth of £12Bn for the UK economy.

 

Business to Consumer accounts for around 65% of the delivery market at present and this is predicted to increase to 78% by 2024. It’s an increasingly competitive market, dominated by big name players such as Amazon Logistics, Hermes and DPD but that’s not to say that that smaller logistics companies and couriers haven’t reaped the benefits of increased demand.

 

Real Life Insights

 

We reached out to our contacts in the industry to discover more about their experience of 2020 and what challenges and opportunities the impact of Covid 19 had brought on.

 

Caroline Downing, Director of All 4 Logistics Ltd shared her views with CAVA Finance. The company runs a commercial road transport freight operation, predominantly transporting manufacturing goods for the automotive and aerospace industries.

 

They have a substantial fleet and have seen new doors open for them during the pandemic. With 2020’s UK car production hitting the lowest level since 1984 and restrictions on travel, All 4 Logistics Ltd turned their attention to assisting clients with moving Covid related products and equipment for the health sector. Caroline shared her perspective on the last year and how this has impacted the Logistics company.



“Changes and unexpected events, problems or challenges can – and do – often occur, regardless of how well-planned or organised you are. The ability to respond effectively to pressure and stress is therefore extremely important in any line of work.

 

Covid and Brexit presented hurdles within the logistics industry few were prepared for, however as a small business owner it is essential to accept your limitations and focus on your companies attributes that can sustain business during this uncertain economic climate.


We regrouped, refocused and reenergized, staff including myself have taken courses from customs administration to health and safety management. We self audited to insure we were working as efficiently as possible and that our customer service remained paramount.


A company is an organic being and if nurtured will survive, I continue to take resolution in seeing members of the UK&EU business world support each other and I am sure despite everything that has been placed in our way in 2020/2021 hard work will prevail.”

 

CAVA Finance also spoke with Rob Howell, Owner of ParcelFast which has been providing reliable urgent delivery services since 2013.

 

For ParcelFast, Covid presented the initial challenges which many businesses faced, concerns over how closures of businesses would impact on suppliers being able to provide usual services. 


However, Rob has seen changes in demand in particular to their confidential and documentation delivery services.


“Many companies are requiring documents electronically as people are working at home or doing meetings via video link, so the demand to get bundles of paperwork delivered has stopped.”

 

The pandemic has given Rob the opportunity to increase his marketing activity and as a result, he found he was able to explore other avenues and help people with moving items.


“I have had more time to look for opportunities posted on social media for people wanting things moving, and getting a lot of these jobs due to my reviews and value for money pricing.

 

Whilst I have seen an increase in this type of work, along with people needing help to move things from house to house or between families, my normal work (pre-CV19) has dropped off, but this has created a balance that has meant the company has still been able to continue operating.”

 

ParcelFast drove forward with community spirit and realised the need for more reliable and flexible services for vulnerable people or those without transport.

“I was able to introduce a socially distanced ‘click & collect’ service where you could order your grocery shopping, or any other purchase that you could buy online and I would go to collect and deliver it on your behalf.

 

This is an essential service for people who are shielding, or have no one they can rely on to get their shopping, or to people who, through choice, don’t want to go out and queue for ages to get into supermarkets etc.

 

I offered this service at a considerably discounted rate to my normal pricing structure and still 12 months on I am doing some ‘click & collects’ for people. It was a really good idea to introduce and was taken up by a lot of people in the early stages of lockdown.”


What are the biggest challenges to maintain a quality delivery service and what trends can we expect this year?

 

It’s predicted that the rapid growth we saw during 2020 will continue but at a slower rate. Customer expectations in the B2C market are high and after last year it’s looking like they’re about to set the foundation for the future of the industry.

 

Parcel shop networks are becoming increasingly popular amongst small businesses to provide a range of delivery options. In addition, there is more focus on greener delivery options such as specially designed collection depots, cargo bikes and lockers.

 

Couriers and logistics companies will be striving to set themselves apart from the competition in the following areas;

 

  • Faster delivery

  • Convenience and choice

  • Up to date tech / real time updates and GPS tracking

  • Increased reliable fleets

  • Sustainability

 

Could now be the perfect time for you to expand your fleet and position yourself a step ahead of your competition? If you would like to discuss your requirements for a commercial vehicle, you require any impartial, no obligation advice, or if you’re considering your finance options but don’t know where to start, please get in touch.

 

You can call Mike on 0161 222 9599 or use our contact form and he’ll be happy to discuss your needs.

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Coach, Commercial, Minibus/Coach Finance, News

Back in June 2019 we reported on the increasing popularity of electric and hybrid vehicles, with predictions that by 2040, electric vehicles will dominate the transport market.

 

With a combination of both environmental and cost benefits, EVs remain a growing trend and we’re seeing more and more companies exploring these options when looking to finance a new vehicle, from commercial vans to private hire, minibus and coaches.

 

We now have much more knowledge of the EV industry than we did a few years ago, with finance and insurance options becoming more easily accessible and our knowledge of finance viability increasing.

 

We’ve seen several large corporations pledge to ‘Go Green’ with their fleets, with companies such as Ford and Amazon pledging to embrace electric vehicles. Ford is releasing it’s all electric Ford E Transit for trial in various European markets this year, with the vehicle being available on mass next year.

 

Amazon have recently rolled out 20 electric delivery vans in Exeter as part of their pledge to be net zero carbon by 2040. This has allowed independent logistics companies who work with Amazon to benefit from access to these vehicles and doing their bit for the environment.

 

2020 was a record year for sales of both battery and plug-in hybrid vehicles, making up 1 in 10 vehicle registrations during 2020, compared to 1 in 30 during 2019, all despite an overall 30% decrease in new car sales following the impact of the pandemic.

 

During the last year, our buying habits have certainly changed, and we’ve seen trends in purchasing emerging such as an increase in demand for Motor Homes and a more conscious thought to our environment and lifestyles.

 

We once again spoke with Neil Cadd of Chadderton Motor Company to gain an update on his perspective of the direction of the EV industry.

 

“In the space of a few short months and whilst we have been under the COVID cloud, the EV world has perhaps come to the forefront of people’s thoughts perhaps a little sooner than would have been expected.

 

Many manufacturers are now releasing details of their EV products that we will see on the roads by the end of 2021 and many courier and delivery companies are taking this on board as they know they need to be seen using environmentally friendly vehicles and perhaps have a slightly different agenda from the local shopkeeper or tradesman when it comes to operating this type of vehicle.

 

The suitability of putting an EV on to your fleet isn’t for everyone, with the current payload and range issues mean that there isn’t an EV for every job and if that is the case then so be it but there will be in time.

 

The more ultra-low emission zones that are announced by towns and cities around the country will mean that businesses have to make the switch to EV but on the flip side running an EV in these areas will prove to be a cost saving over a traditional petrol or diesel vehicle, as is the case in London.

What we ask our customers and potential customers to sit and fully consider all the options when looking at an EV and to look further than the capital cost which can prove to be off putting especially with the larger vehicles. Whole life costs must be taken into account such as road fund licence, maintenance costs, fuel comparisons, grants, downtime when being serviced, congestion charges, residual values all need to be considered when thinking of making the switch.

 

One of, if not the biggest objection that comes from customers is range anxiety, however, this is in many cases a fallacy one customer of ours found his van “which he was out in all day” covered on average less than 80 miles a day so no need to be anxious about it and with over 450 charge points per month opening around the country this really isn’t an issue.

 

Finance companies are now coming to terms with these vehicles and more are offering options to customers through hire purchase, lease and contract hire schemes making them a sound choice once the prospective owner has done their homework properly, analysed their daily usage, and compared costs to realise that it would work for them but as I said before it isn’t for everyone…… yet!”

 

Our future has been front of mind and business owners who have been looking to expand their fleets are considering sustainability and longevity in addition to cost.

 

We’ve previously touched on the Government’s pledge to shift to zero emission cars and to create more desire around these options, company car drivers can benefit from zero or low tax rates as well as a 0% Benefit in Kind rate.

 

Fully electric cars which don’t produce CO2 have dropped from a BIK rate 16% to 0%, which could result in substantial savings for tax payers over the year. In addition, vehicles which produce higher emissions have had the BIK rate raised.

 

Benefits of EVs

 

– Low road tax

– Government Grants for charging ports

– Zero fuel costs

 

We’ve already seen a shift in the public and private hire transport market towards electrification, with operators such as National Express using EVs. Operators are increasingly aware of the environmental impact of their vehicles and it’s clear to see the demand for EVs isn’t slowing.

 

If you’re looking to expand your fleet, have you considered an electric vehicle?

 

With more changes and regulations coming into force in the next few years, we’ll likely see higher rates for more pollutant producing vehicles, meaning an EV or hybrid could be a more suitable long term investment in terms of running costs and benefits.

 

If you’re looking to expand your fleet and want to discuss sustainable, electrical transportation options, please get in touch and we can work with you and your finance requirements as well as introduce you to a trusted supplier.

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Commercial, News

In October last year we worked with longstanding customers Thomas Moss to arrange finance for a Piaggio Pick Up. The vehicles are similar to a Tuk Tuk and are an economical choice for a business. Despite their small size, the LCVs are able to carry a heavy load.

The company have been established since 1956 and the family usually supply their quality produce to hotels, schools and restaurants etc. Given the current climate Thomas Moss are instead helping their local community by providing a home delivery service of fresh fruit and veg boxes during the Covid-19 outbreak.

They’re offering the same dedication to quality and service as they would usually do, to deliveries straight to customer’s doorsteps. The response has been brilliant, with many turning to support local farm shops and butchers during this time.

It’s clear to see from the company’s Facebook page that their customers are welcoming the return of home deliveries, with comments such as the below;

“I am so pleased you will be delivering to homes again.”

“Fresh and excellent quality”

tuktuk

The boxes are available in certain postcode areas and include fresh fruit and veg along with milk, eggs and bread. In addition, the Piaggio has been making an appearance at local farm shops, supporting other local family run businesses.

Once again CAVA is proud to work with companies who are demonstrating resilience at this time and rethinking how they can best serve their communities. We’ve worked with Thomas Moss and owner Anthony Morowski since 2015 and look forward to doing so again once things return to normal.

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Assets, Coach, Commercial, Hints & Tips, Minibus/Coach Finance, News

One of the questions I’ve been asked a lot by clients over the last few weeks has been surrounding payment options for the vehicle or asset they have on finance.


With many businesses impacted, from coach companies who can longer operate the school run to maintenance companies whose equipment cannot be used until restrictions are lifted, keeping up monthly payments is an area of concern.

If we’ve already spoken, then you will be aware that the finance companies are treating this situation with sympathy and have been very accommodating to those who are looking for a solution.

What are the options around my payments?

Many finance companies are offering our customers the option to either defer or reduce payments. You may have seen the defer option referred to as a ‘payment holiday’.

How does this work?

As an example, if you have a 24-month contract in place that had just started this month and were offered 3 months of deferred payments from now, you would be left with 21 months.

Rather than your contract ending in April 2022, it would end in July 2022. The ‘holiday’ means the unpaid months are added to the end of your agreement.

What do I need to be aware of?

You need to be aware that finance companies are treating every case on an individual basis and will be assessing business disruption based upon your own circumstances. Incremental interest may also be added.

The main thing to consider right now is the future of your company. Taking a holiday from payments may seem like a good idea now but if you can continue to pay, perhaps at a reduced rate, would that be more appropriate? Again, this is entirely dependent on individual circumstances and cashflow.

Another factor to consider is to diversify your market. Now you may have more time to be able to focus on planning for the future, are there other avenues you could consider, or industries you could service to help you spread the risk and avoid focusing on one sole source of income?

It is great to have a niche but in when we’re faced with a situation like the one we find ourselves in, it is safer to have a range of customers and suppliers rather than rely on one for all your revenue, because if something happens to them, it impacts you much more.

With many clients contacting their finance provider at this time, be aware that you will face delays and that on average they’re taking around 10 days to look at individual cases with such a high volume of enquiries to assess.

If you need to discuss payment options, please don’t hesitate to contact me initially for some further advice on the above if this would be useful for you and then you may be in a better position to discuss with the finance provider.

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Commercial

CAVA was delighted to receive a call recently from a customer who was originally introduced to us in 2015. Tom Graham was introduced to CAVA by Clive Knight Commercials in November 2015 to finance his purchase of a 2008 Mercedes Benz Vito van, to use for his joinery business.


Nearly five years on and Tom recently decided to replace the van for a newer Vito van (2015 plate).


Despite not working with Tom since 2015, we have kept in regular contact, and last week he approached us to arrange the finance again.  CAVA also referred him back to Clive Knight, to supply the new van,  so Clive got repeat business too!
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Commercial, News

It can be difficult to navigate the finance arena as a small business, and to know what’s worthwhile and what’s not when it comes to finance for a new vehicle or asset for the company.

 

CAVA prides itself on providing a no-nonsense approach, whether you’re a start up company or have been trading for years. We treat every customer with the same personal service, advising with integrity and your best interests in mind.

 

A couple of months ago, in October, Mike Robinson of Rothwell Robinson Ltd contacted us to provide a testimonial after we worked with him to secure the finance for a Ford Transit for their building services company.

 

As a small, family run firm, the company was looking for a suitable finance option for the new vehicle but were faced with un-viable options offered by larger dealerships. Munro Greenhalgh insurance brokers recommended us to Mike who then contacted us to discuss a more suitable deal.

As a broker, generally CAVA are able to offer more competitive deals than that which you might receive via motor dealer finance. We are well connected and have access to the whole of market, including specific lenders for taxi finance or specialists in particular types of asset for example.

We’re pleased to have helped Mike and the team at Rothwell Robinson to expand their services in the Greater Manchester area. Take look at their testimonial here and if you’re looking for a sensible approach to vehicle finance, then contact CAVA today on 0161 222 9599.

 

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Coach, Commercial, Minibus/Coach Finance

Ford have been hitting headlines recently with their pledge to create a fully electric Ford Transit by 2021. This is part of a wider development push for all Ford models, from Fiesta to Transit to be electrified in three years’ time.

2021 is still a long way off but fear not, Ford have been working hard to create an updated version of its large Transit van, with the new design teased at the IAA Commercial Vehicles Show in Hanover in September last year.

Although its not all new, there’s been changes made both outside and in, with options for a new engine and gearbox. It’s a definite upgrade from the existing model, with several technical changes revealed for the upgrade.

Ford’s new model will be more economic with fuel consumption, more powerful with a 185hp engine Minibuses are only available in 130ps and 170ps versions and uses a built in 4G modem providing improved connectivity to aid fleet management. The face lift which will give you a new dashboard from the Tourneo, different grille and some other minor changes. There’s also a new  ‘Limited’ High Specification version.

That’s just the inside, the van’s face lift has seen improvements to storage space within the van itself, making it an ideal option for transporting goods or tools or alternatively using as a personal service vehicle.

The newly introduced ‘Limited’ specification is a first for the full sized Transit line and mirrors that found on other Ford commercial products by offering a higher level of standard equipment to help the vehicle stand out from the crowd; 

Most noticeably, Bi-Xenon projector headlamps provide a significant boost to night-time visibility and feature Ford’s new LED daytime running light signature design which couples with the body coloured front bumper to give a premium look. Elsewhere the driver will be sure to notice the upgraded instrument cluster display and experience the benefits of a high power 170ps engine variant (which becomes a mandatory option at this level) that grants added flexibility across the rev range and aids progress when using the vehicle on challenging gradients, when fully laden or whilst towing.

Based on industry feedback, it’s clear that both driver and passenger expectations are rising year by year, and as such highly equipped versions of the Transit minibus will surely be more desirable come resale time – commanding higher residual values giving a proportional return on investment that makes choosing the Limited specification easier to justify. Regardless of specification or body variant chosen, the Mk8 Transit MCA Minibus offers the very best in it’s class. Take a look at the concept image below for an idea of the new design.


Transit

It’s likely to remain one of the best-selling commercial vehicles in the UK. With that said, David Fishwick Minibus Sales, whom CAVA have used as a trusted supplier for several years, have been working hard to convert and modify a range of their available Passenger Carrying Vehicles to suit the needs of the owner. Their most popular variation is an upgraded Ford Transit Mk8, which is ideally suited for PSV operation, with 10-17 passenger seat options available.

Fishwick’s have a wealth of experience and cater for everyone, offering wheelchair accessible and luxury conversions on many vehicles. Their quick turnaround and variety of stock are just two of the reasons CAVA works with the well-established company.

Ford paused production of their Transit in early Summer last year. Older 2.2L engines in a Transit wouldn’t support automatic breaking which is now mandatory on new minibuses, Ford’s updates bring them in line with new safety and EUROVI Emissions requirements.

The re-launch will be announced at the Commercial Vehicle Show, which runs from the 30th of April to the 2nd of May at the NEC in Birmingham. If you’d like to pre-order, contact CAVA today and we can discuss your requirements.

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Coach, Commercial, Minibus/Coach Finance

If you head to the website of one of the larger vehicle finance companies (you know the kind you see those repetitive adverts for, on TV?) then the first thing you’re faced with is a finance calculator.

 

You might have noticed that we don’t have a finance calculator on our website. That’s not because our website isn’t as fancy or that we didn’t know how to create one. It’s because, whilst you might want a quick answer to see what you could realistically afford, it’s not as simple as punching in a few numbers on a computer.

 

We read an article recently which highlighted that the UK had seen a surge in demand for online finance. FICO, a software firm who conducted the research discovered some quite alarming figures. 50% of UK consumers considered just one lender during an online application for a car loan and a further 86% said they’d prefer to accept an instant loan offer to avoid the paperwork or having to deal with a lender.

 

We’re not trying to pull the wool over your eyes, if you work with CAVA there will be paperwork involved, there’s compliance to adhere to and of course we are working with you as our top priority. Whilst the figures above related to car finance specifically, it’s concerning to think of the amount of people who may have chosen a car deal out of ease, rather than because it was the best deal.

 

It’s even more worrying to think that if people are only considering one deal for their car, then the likelihood is they’re doing the same when it comes to vehicles used for their business. Figures from the British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association have highlighted that company car and van fleet leasing has grown by 6.6% year on year.

 

So, there’s a clear demand for finance of vehicles used for business, which is what we specialise in, from taxis to coaches and commercial vans. CAVA have access to ‘whole of market’, working repeatedly with trusted lenders to secure the most reasonable deals possible for our clients, both new and returning.

 

We want to highlight that the reason we don’t shout about APR rates and how low your repayments could be, isn’t because we can’t compete with the big guns, but because we provide such a bespoke service. We enjoy getting to know our clients on a personal level, discovering more about their business and where it’s heading and offering our advice.

 

Aside from our own expert advice, stemming from Mike’s 35 years of experience in the finance industry, we are also able to put our customers in touch with trusted specialists such as David Fishwick Minibus Sales or Clive Knight Commercials.

 

Their advice is second to none, they can help you to find the most suitable vehicle for your requirements. Whether it’s a 17 seat luxury minbus or minicoach or a van with specific height and length requirements, they will assist in sourcing a vehicle. CAVA will do the rest!

 

Ultimately, we wanted to let you know that we’re not ignoring changes in the industry or the way people find finance, but we are, as we always have been, going to remain a customer focused company. That means we’ll take the time to find you the right deal, talk to you and possibly even meet with you, because you can’t put a price on that. 

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Commercial, News

Who CAVA works with: Clive Knight Commercials


Before LinkedIn had really kicked off, Mike Bailey was (and still is) a big fan of meeting people face to face. Whilst the internet has its place in creating business relationships, there’s nothing like a story of true persistence to compare.


Our relationship with Clive Knight Commercials began back in 2011. Mike was doing the rounds, knocking on doors at business parks and introducing himself. He called into Clive’s premises, which were in Sabden near Clitheroe at the time.

 

Business wasn’t immediate, but Mike continued to speak with Clive regularly and through consistent contact and determination, CAVA received the first referral from Clive Knight.


Since then, CAVA has received business on a regular basis. Clive simply informs his customers that he can refer the finance of their vehicle to a trusted partner. Mike receives the customer’s contact and vehicle details and from there arranges the finance.

 

Clive Knight Commercials is a well-established, family owned Commercial vehicle supplier. With over 40 years of experience they pride themselves on delivering quality and only buy vehicles from reputable sources.


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Commercial, News

When it comes to running a business which relies heavily on transporting goods or machinery in order to complete your work, you need a reliable vehicle. 

Most traders use a Commercial Van for their work and whilst working long hours and performing a physically demanding job, they need the buying process to be as straightforward as possible. 

Having the right vehicle gives you the ability to expand. Larger van? More stock, equipment or machinery can be transported and thus widens the scope of the jobs that can be delivered. 


So where do you start with the buying process? 

We’ve created a short list for you to consider when looking for your next van purchase. 


Why do you need a van?

How large a van do you need?

Do you need any additions? Such as storage or ladder racks or even a built in sat nav system?

What is your budget for finance?

When are you looking to buy?

Once you’ve determined the purpose of the van and what type will suit your needs, consider the type of work you do. Long distance driving would be better suited to a medium/large van and also consider your colleagues, will you need to travel together, if so then you may need to opt for a 3 seater.


Now onto the extras!

What would make your job easier? Are you constantly having to unload your current van to find equipment buried at the back? Additional shelving and storage options, as well as opting for the right roof height could have a huge impact on your business. What about the doors? Will double doors work for you or would a sliding side door better suit your needs? Lastly, don’t forget to utilise all the space! Many vans can be fitted with roof racks for ladders or other equipment.

 

It’s time for the nitty gritty. It’s not as common for a van to be bought outright, it’s a huge investment. You need to consider whether a van is an investment to you or an expense. Finance gives you a flexibility, a suitable and affordable monthly outgoing which in turn improves your business.

 

We’ve had countless companies share their success stories, once they’d got a van for their business, most recently Wash4U Ltd shared their experience of how a new van improved their business. From companies which were then able to deliver more stock to customers, to those who were then able to increase the amount of work they could take on as they had an extra van to get to new jobs.

 

If you’re considering your next commercial van purchase then get in touch with Mike at CAVA Finance to discuss your needs.

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