Whether you’re creating a startup that will be able to disrupt every industry imaginable and change the face of the world, or a factory that prints t-shirts, you’re going to need some assets. Your company will need PCs, lots of machinery, or just printers in order to get it off of the ground, and thankfully there are a lot of asset finance companies in South Africa.
As the founder of a brand new company, or someone with an idea for one, you probably don’t yet have the financial backing to afford everything your business needs. There’s where these companies come in order to help out businesses. Think of them as bankers – well some of them are – who create flexible options to either rent or lease the equipment you need.
Below is a list of some of the companies you should be looking at, and in no particular order.
A private company that was established in 1981, Spartan only finances small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and nothing smaller or larger. The company looks at applicants that have been trading for over three years, and have between 10 and 50 staff members. Spartan covers asset financing for machinery, specialised equipment, technology, software, and fit-out (office furniture) finance.
This sister company of FNB not only covers asset finance for businesses, but personal finance for cars, loans, and leisure items. WesBank is more lenient when it comes to the size and state of businesses and offers customers the choice to purchase or lend assets as payment options. Some of the sectors that WesBank offers finance to includes mining and construction, fleet, agriculture, IT rental, and transport and aviation.
Much like WesBank, Standard Bank also offers different asset finance options for personal and business clients. The bank supports financing for manufacturing, mining equipment, aviation, and the technology sector.
First Asset Finance (FAF)
A sister company to First Health Finance, FAF tries to differentiate itself from competing companies by offering better services and a faster turnaround time. The company doesn’t have any limits on transaction size and offers operating rentals, rent to own, instalment sales, and secured medium term loans solutions. The company supports a range of industries, from energy and marine to construction and printing.
Mercantile Bank Limited
A subsidiary of Mercantile Bank Holdings Limited, Mercantile Bank focuses on business and commercial banking solutions to local and international customers. The company offers leasing, installment finance, and rental finance to companies for assets such as motor vehicle, fleet, and capital equipment.
One of the oldest banks in SA, ABSA, like its competitors, offers a range of asset finance management solutions to customers. ABSA offers asset finance to the same sectors as others on this list, but also gives the example of financing trains. Its differentiator to many others is the Islamic Vehicle and Asset Finance option.
What is there really to say about another bank offering an asset finance solution to businesses? While Nedbank offers mostly the same things, it also includes Full Maintenance leasing to facilitate vehicle administration, and Managed Maintenance to facilitate with vehicle downtime and administration.
The Rental Company
This aptly named company comprises of staff who have been in the active players in the office equipment rental industry for over 16 years. Some of The Rental Company’s clients include Coca Cola, FNB, ITEC, and Nestlé, which means they must be doing something right.
Utho Asset Finance
This is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Utho Investment Holding (Pty) Ltd, which is 100% black economic empowerment company. Launching in 2004, Utho offers asset finance in technology, office automation, software, and more. The company looks to offer flexible payment solutions to customers.
Besides standard asset finance solutions, there are a range of other options out there thanks to the financial technology startup boom. If you’re confident that your company will be able to pay back a large loan in a short amount of time, then options such as LulaLend exist, which specialises in short term loans.
For those who want to shop around, there’s also RainFin, which is a loans marketplace that lists many different loan options. The company used to be part of Barclays.
A solution to fit any business
There are a range of asset finance options for almost any company in SA, whether you want to deal with a bank or a wholly private entity for your needs. While many of these companies may look the same at face value, each one offers some or other unique way in which it can help your business grow. Be sure to always enquire about what is on offer and will suit your needs.