Specialized Financing resilient to war and inflation registers widespread increases in 2022

08 Mar 2023


Specialized financing led a recovery during 2022 that was practically immune to the instability factors that marked this year which witnessed the start of a war in the middle of Europe and the escalation of inflation to double-digit values. The data now revealed by the Portuguese Association of Leasing, Factoring and Renting (ALF) reveals gains of billions of euros in the support given to the economy and the formation of the Portuguese GDP.

"Exactly one year ago, Europe observed the beginning of a war that added uncertainty to the already sensitive scenario arising from the pandemic. The acceleration of the price hikes that started in 2021, associated with the uncertainty of economic agents, interrupted supply chains and economic sanctions on Russia caused instability and increases in prices and production costs," recalls Luís Augusto, president of the Portuguese Association of Leasing, Factoring and Renting. "Despite this, ALF members maintained their support for the Portuguese economy and specialized financing was even able to recover from losses during the pandemic, adapting when necessary, as we saw in Renting, which, despite the shortage of new cars, was able to overcome the barrier of 2 billion euros in vehicles in circulation," notes the president of the Association.

Factoring had the most outstanding performance, with an increase in support for companies of around €7.5 billion. Factoring and Confirming (service for managing payments owed to suppliers) totalled 42 billion euros of turnover. In 2021, the figure had been €34.5 billion, already then a surpassing of the €33.8 billion that ALF members recorded in 2019, a pre-pandemic year.

This significant rise in Factoring was supported by increases of 29.2% in Confirming, to €18.5 billion, 14.8% in Domestic Factoring, to €18.2 billion, and 24.7% in International Factoring. In this last case, note should be made of the 5 billion euros of receivables from exporting companies, an increase of 1 billion euros compared to 2021, a clear sign of the positioning of ALF members as an element supporting the formation of the GDP and the trade balance equilibrium.

Leasing registered an increase in the amount financed of around 3.5%, driven by the better performance in Leasing of movable assets (equipments and vehicles). Despite the constraints caused by the scarcity of new vehicles for sale, a reality embodied in waiting lists with several months to deliver the vehicle, the value of Equipment and Vehicle Leasing increased 5.4% to 1.5 billion euros.

The lower number of vehicles financed last year (25 998, compared to 27 196 in 2021) was offset by the increase in the average value per vehicle, totaling more than a billion euros invested in light and heavy vehicles. The remaining 500 million euros financed all kinds of equipment in more than 7,000 contracts.

In Real Estate Leasing, the year 2022 ended with a total of 804.2 million euros financed, in line with the previous year, with a residual drop of 200 thousand euros. After earnings of 8.6% in 2021, compared to 2020, Real Estate Leasing did not resume this upward movement, still falling short of the 846.2 million euros seen in the pre-pandemic year of 2019.

Renting grew 7% in the number of new cars leased, to 26,249 light vehicles, while the value rose 16.5%, to 667 million euros. The passenger car segment totaled 22,081 vehicles and the commercial vehicle segment reached 4,168 vehicles.

The effects of the semiconductor crisis in the reduction of new car deliveries, clearly evident in the existence of waiting lists of more than 12 months in several manufacturers, ended up conditioning a faster pace in the entry into circulation of new vehicles. Even so, the strong adaptability of ALF members allowed alternative solutions to be found for the fleets of companies and individuals, namely the extension of contracts. In this way, not only did the total fleet with investment by the Renting companies not decrease in comparison to the figures of the last few years, but it even surpassed a new barrier. Thus, at the end of December 2022, the Renting fleet in circulation totaled 2.1 billion euros and more than 126 thousand vehicles, the highest values ever since there is a statistical record.

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