A new initiative to provide soft lending against digital print assets for UK SME printers has been announced by Close Brothers Asset Finance.
The product will enable businesses to fund digital assets without the need to provide any deposit or guarantees, helping printers preserve cash and also help them to make a quick decision in a fast-moving part of the market.
David Bunker, assistant managing director of Close Brothers Asset Finance’s print division, said: “We’ve had our eye on the digital market for some time. Everybody’s been talking about it for so many years but now nearly every print company has some sort of digital print engine, some more than others.”
The traditional banking view held by Bunker was that digital printers represent little value, making them a challenge to underwrite, with this being the main reason that the vendors themselves have often provided finance.
Bunker added: “We’ve seen a space in the market where customers want something that’s not related to consumables. With this we are underwriting the customer rather than the asset, so it’s a traditional hire purchase to fund the machine over three or four years. Using hire purchase instead of renting the asset they get the tax benefit from it and so it’s been a customer-driven product really.”
Any type of new or ex-demo digital production printing machines will be considered through the initiative, including high-speed, high-capacity printers for commercial printing and in-house departments to continuous -feed printers for high-volume printing.