Customer demand will ultimately shape the extent to which Nisbets expands the financial services it offers operators following a recent move into leasing, its CEO has said.
Financing large-ticket catering items is undoubtedly becoming a bigger issue for foodservice operators as they look to rein in costs, with many striving to sweat their assets for as long as possible rather than invest in new capital equipment.
In recognition of the outlay required to acquire heavy duty kit, Nisbets recently rolled out an interest free credit offer that allows customers to spread payments on Polar refrigeration and Thor cooking appliances over 12 months.
This offering is being managed by Chef Leasing Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nisbets.
Nisbets’ group CEO, Klaus Goeldenbot, said that leasing is an area he plans to monitor closely in the months ahead.
“We are spending more time to understand our customer requirements, using data to find out what customers really need and then basing our decisions on that,” he explained. “At this point in time I think we need more insight from the customer so that we can prioritise because there are so many ideas floating around. But certainly the development of financial products is an interesting area.”
Asked whether his instinct tells him that the catering equipment market will move more towards leasing in future, Mr Goeldenbot responded: “How big it will become, I don’t really know at the moment to be honest. But I think you need to give the customer choice and then we will see how far it goes. It is a bit like the e-commerce discussion — how big will that be one day? If you don’t offer ecommerce then you are gone, I’m not sure that leasing is of the same importance but what we have picked up from customers is that there is a need for it, which is why we launched it.
“The market will decide whether it becomes a bigger element of the offering for us, but it is becoming a part of the menu in the current climate because people are finding it difficult to secure funding for capital equipment.”