Europe

eCommerce And The Great Van Boom

Between a resurgence in the construction industry and the boom in online shopping, vans are big in the U.K. right now — and getting bigger.

Financing for commercial vehicles is on the rise on the other side of the pond, up 10 percent year over year in August, according to the Finance and Leasing Association.

The bulk of that growth was powered by retail and an upswing in people going the entrepreneurial route and setting up their own businesses.

“It’s very easy to get vehicles financed on very competitive rates these days,” said Brian Templar of logistics consultancy Davies and Robson.

Legislation passed last year in the U.K. has put a damper on demand for trucks, which has led to the great van renaissance that has seen the number of vans on highways and byways pick up by 17 percent in 2015, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

“Logistics is the next big battleground in eCommerce. [Retailers] have always delivered larger items like furniture, but now they will be able to offer it even for smaller items,” said Anita Balchandani, partner at consultancy firm OC&C.

The change has seen U.K. firms changing themselves to meet the times. Argos became the first high-street brand to launch same-day deliveries nationwide last week. Amazon Prime Now offers same-day shipping options in London and Coventry. Ocado, an upscale online grocer, spent £12.5 million on vehicle leases in 2014, against £9 million the previous year.

The big challenge going forward, said Robin Byde of brokerage Cantor Fitzgerald, will be finding enough drivers, as shortages have been an endemic issue of late.

To check out what else is HOT in the world of payments, click here.

——————————

LIVE PYMNTS TV OCTOBER SERIES: POWERING THE DIGITAL SHIFT – B2B PAYMENTS 2021 

Banks, corporates and even regulators now recognize the imperative to modernize — not just digitize —the infrastructures and workflows that move money and data between businesses domestically and cross-border.

Together with Visa, PYMNTS invites you to a month-long series of livestreamed programs on these issues as they reshape B2B payments. Masters of modernization share insights and answer questions during a mix of intimate fireside chats and vibrant virtual roundtables.

TRENDING RIGHT NOW