The proposed takeover by ALD of LeasePlan has taken a step nearer completion with the signing by ALD of the framework agreement today (April 22, 2022). The framework agreement is a binding agreement for the 100% acquisition of LeasePlan for €4.9 billion (USD $5.5 billion).
The combined companies will give ALD a total portfolio of 3.5 million vehicles under fleet management. The company says this will supercharge its scale-up to becoming a significant mobility provider on a global basis.
Tim Albersten, ALD CEO, identified the issues he foresaw and the necessity for the acquisition in an interview with editor Mike Antich at GlobalFleetManagement:
"Today, our direct competitors can be easily identified. The global trend has been away from ownership and transitioning to a more user-ship model. In five to 10 years, it will be difficult to imagine that people will actually go to the bank and take a loan to buy a car. Everything will be a subscription or will be on a leasing contract to get access to the vehicle. But you don’t actually get the ownership of it, for which we are very well positioned. But obviously this is the way the market is going and that competition will be intensified over the years, no doubt about that."
According to a report by FitchRatings, the move by ALD is part of a shift by French banks into fleet leasing which they see as a growth area for earnings. "We expect French banks to expand their fleet leasing operations further, largely through bolt-on acquisitions or partnerships," FitchRatings said.
Key banks involved in fleet leasing are Societe Generale (ALD), BNP Paribas (Arval), and Credit Agricole (Leasys). We’ll watch to see what further transactions will re-shape global fleet management.
In the meantime, ALD added that the signing of the framework agreement kept the transaction for LeasePlan on course for closure by end 2022.