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March 10, 2020updated 08 Jun 2020 9:47am

Alfa targets middle-tier UK leasing companies with out-of-box offering

By Alejandro Gonzalez

Alfa, a global provider of software for the asset finance sector, has targeted the UK small to medium-ticket equipment finance market with an out-of-the-box launch.

The London-based software developer today unveiled Alfa Start, whose first UK client was recently revealed as challenger bank Hampshire Trust Bank.

Sarah Taylor, senior project manager at Alfa, said: “It’s been a year in the making, but we’ve also used our experience working in the UK by building on the principles and processes we’ve used in this market before.”

Taylor said that although this latest back-office offering was designed with middle-rung equipment leasing companies in mind, Alfa Start “delivers the full power of Alfa Systems”, the company’s purpose-built premium product typically used by larger and more established players.

Today’s offering is more suitable for the smaller, more agile customer. “We’ve reduced the implementation timelines and made it more affordable for those customers,” said Taylor.

Alfa Start customers “get the benefit of the Alfa Systems platform”, but the software comes preconfigured, “so from day one, customers can get onto Alfa Systems straight away and start testing without having to customise and configure the system,” she said.

Shortcuts to the various payment and documentation integrations mean “user testing and knowledge transfer” of Alfa Start can take about 20 weeks – not many months or a year – to realise, Taylor said.

Client support is also included in the out-of-the-box offering. Taylor continued: “We work on-site with our customers for the entirety of the implementation. It’s all about getting people on the system comfortable with it.”

Taylor said learning how to use and navigate the software is done in bite-sized chunks that follow the equipment leasing cycle, such as new business; in-life servicing; cash management; end-of-life servicing and asset management processing.

Who’s the ideal customer? “We’re looking at small to medium-ticket asset finance providers, such as challenger banks,” Taylor said. “But Start can also be used as an accelerator for larger projects.”

Potential customers, she said: “Could be limited by systems that don’t let them write all the different products they want to. Alfa Start will allow them to start writing more complex products so they can grow their business.”

Alfa Start for equipment finance is currently available in the UK only, but Alfa expects to roll out Alfa Start for additional regions and verticals in the near future, the company said in a statement.

Alfa is a trading name of Alfa Financial Software.

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