Stern Groep N.V., the listed Dutch market leader in automotive retail, presented its new strategic plan ‘Fast Forward Reloaded’ for 2019 – 2022 to investors and analysts on 20 December 2018. An important part is the search for a strategic partner for the lease activities, subject to this delivering mutual benefits. Stern intends to sell its lease portfolio to a lease partner, that in exchange will make solid commitments regarding the long-term supply of services by Stern Group in relation to the purchase of cars, maintenance, repairs, car body repairs and rental of cars and alternative electric forms of transport.
Fast Forward Reloaded
Since its incorporation in 1993, Stern Group (an NPM Capital portfolio company) has been working on an integrated mobility proposition in which the various activities strengthen each other. Stern itself thus provides a proportion of the necessary revenue and added value per business unit and can therefore position itself more independently with respect to large parties in the automotive sector such as importers, insurers and lease companies.
For the success of this strategy, keeping the mobility services such as insurance and finance on the balance sheet is not necessary. For instance, there was the successful sale of Stern Finance B.V., the own intermediary for retail and commercial finance and insurance, to Bovemij in 2010. Stern has continued to sell finance and insurance products to consumers and businesses since that time.
After the trading update of 14 November 2018, in which Stern announced that it would be reviewing the strategic options for SternLease, positive exploratory talks have taken place. Important decisions will be taken in the coming months. ING Corporate Finance and Van Doorne have been engaged by Stern as financial and legal advisers respectively. Once the terms of the deal and following steps are clear, Stern Group will issue a press release without delay and convene an Extraordinary Meeting of Shareholders.
Read the full press release of Stern Groep