Earlier this year Falcon reported on the record levels of customers choosing photocopier leasing as opposed to outright purchase of devices. Falcon could reveal that since 2008 and the dawn of the present recession, there had been a steady growth in photocopier leasing levels, starting from an almost even spread in 2007/2008 to 60% photocopier leasing in 2009 and an astonishing 70% plus by the start of 2011. Well, more-or-less half way through 2011 and Falcon can reveal another rather staggering increase in leasing levels – by June this year they’d reached an all time high of 82%. Now more than ever, it seems, customers are realising the many benefits which photocopier leasing can bring. For many, the structure of photocopier leases has changed significantly since they last considered the option, so that entering a photocopier leasing agreement today is much simpler and the costs associated much lower. For others, the relatively short term financial commitment of photocopier leasing has become very much more attractive in the more straightened economic times we’re experiencing. Here we explore how photocopier leasing levels have shot up so dramatically in the past few years and what seems to be driving the change in customer preference.
A Consistent Increase in Photocopier Leasing Levels
Since the UK entered the present economic downturn in 2008, there has been a consistent growth in the number of organisations choosing to lease photocopiers rather than buy.
2009 saw photocopier leasing levels increase to over 60%, from an almost even split between leasing and purchase in 2008. Falcon had reported at the time of the news that as well as the natural tendency towards leasing as a consequence of the uncertain economic times, photocopier leasing companies had been doing much more to make themselves more attractive to potential customers. Since then, as the economic fortunes of the country haven’t improved and photocopier leasing companies have been working hard to promote leasing as the most cost-effective solution, the proportion of customers choosing to lease photocopiers has increased further still. At the time of the last leasing figures in January, Falcon could reveal that up to 75% of new business came from photocopier leasing customers. Now, half way through 2011 and that previous record high for leasing has been smashed. The average perecentage of customers leasing photocopiers in the first five months of 2011 was an astonishing 82%.
What is Driving the Increase in Photocopier Leasing?
The major advantage of leasing a photocopier as opposed to purchasing outright is avoiding the significant financial outlay which buying any modern device will usually entail. While small/medium-sized Canon photocopiers for instance are now the best value they have ever been, the imageRUNNER Advance C2020L Canon photocopiers for instance costing around £2000, for many businesses that’s still not something they can afford, especially in the uncertain economic times we’re experiencing at the moment. Photocopier leasing allows customers to pay for any devices, including all the latest Canon photocopiers, at manageable monthly amounts and only for the time they require. As has been noted, photocopier leasing companies have been going the extra mile to encourage organisations not to hang-on to ineffective reprographics systems or hold-off from buying new devices out of fear of costs. Unlike the earlier days of photocopier leasing, with much greater competetion among photocopier leasing companies, they now typically make much lower margins and are also far more flexible about minimum monthly leasing terms. For this reason, not only do photocopier leasing customers benefit from low monthly costs but they’re also able to limit their financial commitment over time.
With many businesses currently operating very close to their bottom-line, staff time is also more valuable than ever. For many, the fact that photocopier leasing companies now offer all-inclusive packages covering all toner, parts maintenance as well as all servicing and installation, really takes the stress out of owning a photocopier, where often a non-technical member of staff would find themselves saddled with the task of topping up the toner or attempting to resolve technical issues. Together with the more flexible leasing terms, lower costs and all-inclusive packages, photocopier leasing companies are also working closely with potential customers to maximise the chances of securing lease financing. In a climate in which banks are increasingly unlikely to lend to businesses, photocopier leasing companies are effectively bucking the trend in providing finance for the vast majority of their customers.
But a major reason why many organisations are opting for photocopier leasing rather than outright purchase is to keep up with the latest developments in technology. As more and more innovations are built into the latest photocopiers, Canon photocopiers for instance now connecting directly with ‘cloud’ services such as Google Docs, leasing allows businesses to regularly renew equipment, as technological developments occur. With typically shorter leasing terms, businesses don’t have to wait very long to replace devices and take advantage of the latest equipment, meaning they’re always able to enjoy the best productivity and efficiency savings possible.
The ongoing recession means there’s very little optimism in the economy at the moment, with many businesses remaining uncertain about their prosepcts for the future. With banks reluctant to lend in such precarious times, it has become difficult for many small and medium-sized businesses to secure funding for their larger outlays. Leasing photocopiers has thus become a much more attractive option. Not only do regular monthly payments over a fixed, agreed term make financial planning much simpler, but the greater flexibility, the ability to keep up with advancements in technology and that great efforts that photocopier leasing companies have made to reduce costs and also to help customers secure lease finance, now mean that for many orgnaisations, photocopier leasing has become the preferred option.
Falcon is a leading supplier of Canon photocopiers and document management solutions. All the latest Canon photocopiers and MFPs, including the award-winning imageRUNNER and Canon imageRUNNER Advance ranges are available from Falcon, either to purchase or lease.