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Study: Copier and Furniture Leasing Marketplace Rebounding; Expected to Exceed 10 Billion

17 Aug, 2005

Study: Copier and Furniture Leasing Marketplace Rebounding; Expected to Exceed 10 Billion

The Equipment Leasing Association, the non-profit membership organization representing companies involved in the forecasted $248 billion equipment leasing and finance industry, and R.S. Carmichael & Co., Inc., a marketing research and management consulting firm, White Plains, New York, has released a new report, Office Copier and Furniture Leasing, 2005 U.S. Market Dynamics and Outlook.

The office copier and furniture equipment industries represent two of the top four equipment categories for capital investment by small businesses, according to the report. The office copier market, in particular, has rebounded to near 2000 growth levels. In 2000, business investment in copier equipment was 9.6 billion, but dropped to a low of $4.8 billion in 2001; in 2006, the office copier market is expected to reach 8.3 billion - a significant rebound for that market.

"Office copier equipment is a staple in businesses, and is a mainstay for small ticket lessors," said Richard S. Carmichael, Managing Director of R.S. Carmichael & Co., Inc., which conducted the study. "It is a mature market. But technology, such as the multi-function aspects of new copiers, is sustaining this market. So, this market warranted an in-depth study."

The lease financing penetration rate for office copiers is estimated to be upwards of 80 percent, with lease financing in this equipment type expected to reach $6.5 billion in 2005, and $7 billion in 2006.

"Overall, the findings indicate that small businesses use leasing as a significant financing mechanism for their office copier and furniture needs," added Michael Fleming, the association's president. "Clearly leasing's flexibility and convenience is paying off for the office copier vendors and end-users alike."

Other highlights from the report include:

-- Technology continues to affect his market with advancements made in digital copier technology, IT system connectivity (networking PCs to copiers), and color copying capability.

-- The majority of office copier lease financing transactions (75 percent) fall in the small-ticket ($25,000 to $250,000) leasing category.

-- Office copiers have consistently represented one of the largest small-ticket leasing markets.

-- Office furniture (workstations, desks, partitions, storage systems and seating), has been relatively stable since the dot-com bust earlier this decade.

-- Most lease financing transactions in office furniture fall in the $100,000 to $500,000 range.

-- Government leasing (both federal and municipal) appears to be an under-served market in the office equipment leasing marketplace.

Added Carmichael, "The study's findings also show that turnaround time for credit approval ranges from less than one hour to seven hours, depending on the transaction size. Additionally, 20 percent of lease applications came over the Internet."

Among the market studies' key objectives, the report measures and characterizes the U.S. office copier and furniture equipment leasing market; identifies the trends affecting lease financing penetration in each market; evaluates the leasing practices and needs to customers and equipment vendors; assess the lease financing competitive environment, and projects the U.S. office copier and furniture equipment leasing markets through 2005.

Industry members and other interested parties may purchase a copy of Office Copier and Furniture Leasing, 2005 U.S. Market Dynamics and Outlook, for $499 from http://www.ELAOnline.com/ELAstore/ or call ELA at 703-527-8655.

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