The London Institute of Banking and Finance (LIBF) has launched an asset finance qualification in conjunction with the Finance and Leasing Association (FLA).

The Diploma in Asset Finance (DipAF) was launched 22 September at an event in Peninsular House, London, attended by asset finance professionals.

The distance-learning qualification is billed as a way for asset finance professionals to demonstrate their professionalism and gain a better understanding of the sector and its customers.

Stephen Sklaroff, director general of the FLA, said: “In the new economic and political circumstances that we now face as a country, the FLA’s members are determined to continue to serve their customers. The opportunities we face in our view are at least as important as the undoubted challenges.

“So against that background, by investing in the future of the industry we’re helping secure the vital contribution it continues to make to the UK economy. That is why we have, in conjunction with the LIBF, created the diploma.”

The Level 5 diploma consists of three units, and has been designed to take between 12 and 18 months. The maiden cohort will commence on 14 November on an 18 month timetable, and FLA members have been offered a lower rate of fees.

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Steve Bolton, vice chairman of the FLA’s asset finance division, stated that the diploma was aimed at both experienced asset finance professionals and new entrants to the industry.

Bolton said: “The asset finance diploma is the ideal way to develop the professionalism of those already in the industry, as well as giving those who are coming into the industry the opportunity to put their careers on a solid footing at the very beginning.”