Mike Bailey, CAVA Finance 0161 222 9599
Coach, Minibus/Coach Finance

We recently worked once again with Paul Cruickshanks of Tayforth Travel to secure finance on a VW Transporter Shuttle to expand their luxury minibus travel fleet. We were introduced some time ago by David Fishwick in Colne and have since worked together for several purchases of various minibuses for their growing company.

The company is based in Falkirk in Scotland and are a big part of the community, providing tours of the local area’s tourist attractions alongside minicoach hire for all occasions and travel needs.

CAVA Finance is proud to have helped the company to grow during a difficult time and it’s great to see some normality resuming, with their new shuttle recently providing the transport for a customer’s golf trip to Drumoig Golf Centre in St Andrews, as seen in the photo below.

Tayforth Travel

Tayforth Travel is one of the many minibus, coach and taxi companies that have proved themselves to be invaluable during a crisis.

From helping key workers to ensuring the most vulnerable in society are cared for, transport companies have gone above and beyond what’s expected of them in order to keep communities functioning.

Paul kindly shared his story of how they’ve coped with the pandemic.

“Thanks again to Mike Bailey at CAVA Finance for helping us finance our new bus.

The coronavirus has hit us hard with the loss of tours, football hires, golf outings, airport transfers and schools.

We are fortunate that our local councils in Falkirk and West Lothian have been really good supporting us through these difficult times.

We have been doing some work at a special needs school and with the NHS and some voluntary work with Falkirk Football Club delivering food parcels to the elderly and needy.

We are one of the lucky coach operators that have survived some have not been so lucky.

Looking forward to returning back to normal, hopefully sometime soon.”

As you can see, Paul and the company are a big part of the Falkirk community, from providing transport to supporting their local football club, Falkirk FC. 

We’re looking forward to seeing all our customers again soon, in the meantime we are here to continue to provide advice and assistance around your next vehicle purchases. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’d like to discuss your options.

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Minibus/Coach Finance, News, Taxis

Over the past few months public transport and private hire transport companies have been hugely hit by the impact of Covid 19.

As lockdown restrictions were put in place over the last few months, the demand for taxi or bus services dropped, with people remaining in their homes and travelling only when necessary.

As CAVA’s specialist areas cover Coach, Minibus and Taxi finance, we were well aware that our clients were facing some difficult months ahead. What we’ve seen is a great sense of camaraderie, community spirit and positivity.

We’ve shared several stories from our clients, from Brighter Blinds to Thomas Moss. This month we’d like to share the story of Wheels Private Hire Ltd, one of our longest standing customers.

We’ve worked with Director Steve Howard for five years now and since 2015 we’ve helped the company grow their fleet and maintain a great service. With over 22 years of experience in the private hire industry, the Leeds based company weren’t going to be slowed down by a national lockdown!

Wheels have remained active on their social pages, ensuring customers are aware that they’re available to assist 24/7 as usual. The brilliant team have continued to provide reliable, clean and efficient transport solutions to keyworkers and the general public, who need to make essential travel.

The private hire firm has ensured that key workers can travel safely with priority booking for NHS workers and that general public can get supplies, all whilst strengthening their community.

Even during a time of crisis they’ve been helping local businesses and supporting their customers by teaming up with YouCard, which provides discounts from various companies across Leeds.

We’re proud to be working with such resilient companies during this time and are looking forward to restrictions easing and working together again.

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Coach, Minibus/Coach Finance, Taxis

The first of June saw the first glimpse of normality resuming for the UK with slight eases of lockdown restrictions being lifted.

Some schools re-opened, people are able to socialise in groups of six in an outdoor space and some non-essential businesses were able to reopen.

Car showrooms were amongst those opening their doors to the public for the first time since lockdown measures were implemented. The motor industry is taking huge steps to ensure the safety of both staff and customers as dealerships re-open.

It’s been a long 10 weeks and we’ve certainly seen how the industry can adapt, with an increase in business being conducted online over this period.

With public transport use being discouraged during lockdown, there has been a significant impact on the travel industry, which we will hopefully have some updates on towards the end of June. Whilst public transport has been discouraged, this could explain a boost in sales amongst cheaper new model vehicles or used vehicles.

We work closely with a select few, trusted dealerships including David Fishwick who have kindly provided us with an update outlining the preparation they’ve taken to reopen.

“David Fishwick, the Minibus specialists have always operated on a national basis due to the specialist nature of their product range and are gearing up to re-open their showroom and also resume with delivery of vehicles within the coming days, having put measures in place to adhere to distancing guidelines during both the preparation and handover process to protect their customers and members of staff.

Matt Eames, Business development manager advises that despite some short term disruption caused by COVID-19, their order book has been largely unaffected with demand for new & used EuroVI compliant minibuses in particular being very high across both commercial and non-profit sectors. Whilst the Tourism industry is seeing changes in level of demand, the feedback from their customers is that new opportunities are opening up providing travel for small groups of passengers who do not want to use public transport – a role in which a flexible small vehicle can excel.

Key suppliers including vehicle and component manufacturers are back at work and scheduling revised delivery dates, allowing the coach building arm of the business to re-start from 1st June, with a range of new passenger and driver screening options in the final stages of development to help the end users operate the vehicles safely.”

We’re very much looking forward to continuing to work with David Fishwick! CAVA has fortunately remained functional throughout lockdown, but we understand the uncertainty surrounding the last few months has caused many companies to put certain plans on hold.

We’d like to reassure all clients and future clients that we are here to offer impartial, no obligation advice, so if you’re considering your 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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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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Coach, Minibus/Coach Finance, News

In a time where everything seems to have been flipped on it’s head, businesses are struggling and people’s daily lives are disrupted, it’s important to make the best out of a bad situation.

Longstanding customer A&A Travel (Sussex) Ltd have done exactly that. Following on from last Friday’s school closures around the country and Monday’s announcement of more significant lockdown measures, the company are doing all they can for their community.

These measures have resulted in unexpected availability of drivers and vehicles, where they would previously have been on the school run or providing transport for commuters.

Based in Sussex, the company have been providing transport to their community for 20 years. Many of their passengers fall into the elderly or vulnerable category. To give back, A&A put in place a free transport service to those who need it most.

“In these difficult times, we want to do our part to give something back to the community, and to our valued customers.”


Of course, with the daily announcements from the Government altering people’s usual routines and them recently imploring people to remain at home, this service will no longer be able to operate for the public in the same way.

However, A&A haven’t stopped there. In between sanitising their vehicles and ensuring passengers are seated a safe distance apart, they’re looking after our NHS and other important key workers.

“We also want to give something back to all those working hard in the NHS, Emergency Services, and “Key Worker” communities.”

Their commitment takes care of the transportation for key workers and their children, including;

– Transporting children of Key workers to School

– Rail Replacement, including emergency

– Transporting Key workers to & from work

– Patient Transport for hospitals

The company have noted on their Facebook page that they are in talks with the Council, Police, Local MP’s and Hospitals about how they could also offer further services or potentially adapt their vehicles to help a greater number of people.

If you have any contacts in East or West Sussex who may benefit from A&A Travel’s generous contribution to essential travel, please get in touch with them here.

We’re also keen to find out what our other clients are doing at the minute. If you have a story to share which could give someone a well needed boost, we want to spread positive news. Please get in touch here.

CAVA Finance is operating as usual during this time, albeit from the home office, and happy to assist with any queries!

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Contact Mike, Hints & Tips, Minibus/Coach Finance, News
Globally we are facing a time of great uncertainty, the impacts of which are being felt across all industries.


In view of these unprecedented circumstances, we wanted to reassure our clients that our funders will work with our you to take your individual circumstances into consideration, if your business has been impacted by the Coronavirus.


From the shutting down of vehicle manufacturing factories to the impact closer to home for coach, minibus and taxi operators, the automotive industry is facing economic shockwaves caused by the reaction to the virus.


This is a particularly tough time for those who rely on customers travelling, with self-isolation or even mass quarantines being introduced, taxi and coach operators are seeing a loss of bookings, with staff being prevented from travelling or customers putting holiday plans on hold.


As mentioned above, funders are treating each case individually but may be able to assist with ‘finance holidays’ to ease the financial strain of a loss of custom during this time.


I will be offering free advice to clients with concerns or difficulties. If you would benefit from this, you should contact me here and we can discuss in more detail.


Similarly, if you have any specific queries relating to your contracts or future vehicle and asset purchasing needs, which you feel may be impacted by Coronavirus, please let me know.


Please get in touch with me should you need any more information.
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Coach, Minibus/Coach Finance

Cast your mind back a few years or so and hybrid and electric vehicles were still relatively uncommon. However, recent reports support the prediction that by 2040 electric vehicles will dominate the market. Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates that more than 80% of sales of new buses and around 60% of sales of light commercial vehicles will be for electric options by 2040.

 

Even the iconic London double decker bus is going electric, with 100 electric buses joining fleets in the Capital from Chinese EV manufacturer BYD alongside the Optare Metrodecker buses which are in operation. This sees the UK further expanding it’s zero emissions public transport vehicles.

 

The shift in the market to electrification is progressing rapidly with operators such as National Express jumping on board and purchasing from busmakers ADL. There doesn’t seem to be any sign of the market slowing thanks to a combination of both public demand for cleaner and greener travel options and the increased productivity which EVs provide. 

 

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs have released figures highlighting that currently 13% of nitrogen dioxide levels in our environment are a result of buses, compared to 62% from cars and taxis.

 

Whilst emissions from buses and coaches are already lower, the public transport and service bus industry have an important role to play in providing cleaner travel options to reduce emissions and improve air quality.

 

With operators increasingly conscious of emissions charges and the environmental impact of their vehicles, it is refreshing to see this shift. It’s an interesting time for the automotive industry as a whole and CAVA is looking forward to assisting both existing and new clients in their electrical vehicle journeys.

 

If you’re considering a new vehicle and want to find out more about electrical options, please don’t hesitate to get in touch an I can introduce you to a trusted supplier and assist with finance requirements.



Our article is also featured in Bus & Coach Buyer in both print and digital format. Take a look here

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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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