11 jan 22

Stellantis and Crédit Agricole target 1 million vehicle, multi-brand leasing fleet

Manufacturer group Stellantis is setting up a multi-marque leasing company in a 50:50 partnership with Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance (CACF), with a target of running a fleet of more than 1 million vehicles by 2026.

The French bank will buy a 50% stake in FCA Bank and Leasys Rent, which are both currently owned by Stellantis. The deal will see Stellantis and CACF combine the Leasys and Free2Move Lease operations on the Leasys platform to create ‘a European leader’ in full service leasing.

Top 5 leasing company

Figures reported by the two partners reveal that at the end of 2020, Leasys managed a fleet of 314,000 vehicles, while Free2Move had 369,000. Combining the two companies will immediately create a top five player in the European car leasing market, with operations in 10 countries.

Stéphane Priami, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Crédit Agricole and CEO of CA Consumer Finance, said: “This new player would serve the Crédit Agricole Group's ambition to take key positions in car leasing activity, the fastest-growing segment with the greatest potential in the automobile market which is undergoing a profound change and facing evolving habits.”

He added that the deal would boost the bank’s strategic plan to meet customers’ demands for “all-inclusive and innovative” offers.

1 million vehicles

Carlos Tavares, Stellantis CEO, said: “The development of a leasing business in Europe is key for both partners. The ambition of this new joint venture between two leading companies is intended to manage a fleet of over a million vehicles in the mid-term and leverage the potential of our long-term leasing joint operations.”

As a manufacturer, Stellantis owns brands such as Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Citroen, Peugeot, DS, Opel, Vauxhall, Maserati, Abarth, Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge and Ram.

Other OEMs with multi-brand leasing operations include BMW with Alphabet and Daimler with Athlon, and Toyota with Kinto.

New finance, lease and mobility company

In addition to the merging of Leasys and Free2Move, CA Consumer Finance also plans to take 100% ownership of FCA Bank and Leasys Rent, and launch a stand-alone, Europe-wide car financing, leasing and mobility operation in 18 countries.

This new business would target three different areas: white label agreements and joint ventures currently managed by FCA Bank (plus winning new JVs); securing new agreements to provide car, van and motorbike finance to dealers, distribution groups and rental companies; and funding Leasys Rent’s short-term rental, subscription and mobility activities. Its goal is to become a €10 billion business by 2026.

"This ambitious project would lead to a profitable and diversified growth. The Crédit Agricole Group would create a European leasing leader, together with Stellantis, while benefiting from a 100% innovative car financing platform that would enable it to serve all market players in 18 countries, including white labels, with a complete and operational offer," said Priami.

Stellantis finance partnerships

In a further move, Stellantis is setting up joint ventures for consumer finance with BNP Paribas Personal Finance in Germany, Austria and the UK; and with Santander Consumer Finance (SCF) in France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Poland, the Netherlands. SCF will also become the exclusive finance partner of Stellantis in Portugal.

Contracts for all the new agreements are scheduled to be signed in the first quarter of this year, with the transactions finalised in the first half of 2023, following authorisation and approval from national regulators.


Image: Stellantis

Authored by: Jonathan Manning