ALD has signed an agreement to acquire SternLease, the leasing arm of Stern Group, the Dutch listed automotive retail company.

SternLease has a fleet of approximately 13,000 vehicles rented to SMEs and private individuals in the Netherlands. The subsidiary provides leasing services through direct distribution and Stern’s network of 85 local dealerships.

As well as the agreement to acquire SternLease, a dedicated distribution agreement has been signed to provide access to the local dealership network for the exclusive distribution of ALD leasing services for SMEs and private individuals.

As ALD’s preferred partner, Stern Group will supply cars and mobility services such as car maintenance, body repair and rental services. Customers will also benefit from services provided through Stern Car Services’ 17 branches for brand-certified repairs and maintenance.

This transaction is intended to strengthen ALD’s SME and private lease offering in the Netherlands, positioning the company as the fifth largest player in the market. ALD in the Netherlands currently manages a fleet of approximately 50,000 contracts with large corporates, SMEs and private individuals.

Mike Masterson, chief executive officer of ALD, said: “SternLease B.V. has developed a competitive position in the SME and private lease market for long-term leasing services. This transaction further enhances our strategy to increase the reach of services brought to our customers. It is an example of our ability to identify bolt-on acquisitions with key differentiation factors to expand our coverage. We are very pleased to welcome the SternLease teams and look forward to a successful collaboration with Stern Group.”

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Henk van der Kwast, chief executive officer of Stern Group, said: “We are very pleased with the partnership as envisioned by both partners. We believe this alliance will significantly boost the business of our dealerships and SternPoint, as well as further improve the integrated mobility services we provide to our customers.”

Last month ALD Automotive and Nordea Finance increased collaboration under the NF Fleet brand to provide for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and private individuals in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden.