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Point of Sale Finance: UK Market Profile and Forecast 2017

  • January 2017
  • 58 pages
  • Apex Insight
Report ID: 3681384


Table of Contents

This report focuses on the UK market for point of sale, or POS, finance, which is also known as retail finance, in-store credit or store instalment credit. It refers to loans provided by, or on behalf of, a retailer to enable a consumer to make a specific purchase.

The report quantifies the market size in loans outstanding and loan provider revenues, historical growth rates and levels of industry profitability. It also includes an in-depth analysis of the relevant drivers of industry growth setting out historical trends and available forecasts. Apex Insight’s forecast for industry growth is based on this analysis of historical trends and growth drivers.

This report aims to answer a series of questions on the POS finance market:
– How does the market operate? What changes have there been recently?
– What would be the impact of an interest rate rise?
– Which types of retailers use it most frequently?
– How does it compare with alternative / substitute forms of finance?
– What role has new technology played in the market?
– What is the market size and historical growth rate, in terms of total loans outstanding and lender revenues? What future growth can be forecast? What are the risks to future market growth?
– What hard evidence is there to support views of historical and forecast market growth?
- What are the POS finance market drivers and how have they trended?
– Who are the main finance providers and principals, which are most widely used by retailers, how have they performed?
– What do they each do, who do they work for and how do they operate?

Many retailers choose to subsidise the cost of the credit as a promotional expenditure and offer “interest-free credit” or “zero per cent finance”.
It is used by both national retail chains and independent shops, most commonly in the home and furniture, jewellery and electricals sectors.
Loans are generally personal loans not secured on the asset and without a lease arrangement.

The market has been driven by trends in a range of demand and supply factors, including:
– The appetite of consumers for purchasing the kinds of items which tend to be financed in this way, which is likely to be related to the overall level of retail sales but with more of an emphasis on discretionary purchases (big-ticket leisure items) and furniture
– The level of overall consumer confidence as a factor in determining whether to make larger, discretionary purchases
– Overall performance of the economy as a driver of both retail sales and consumer confidence
– Level of housing transactions, given that many big-ticket purchases, such as furniture, tend to follow a house move

The market consists of retailers, broker platforms and lenders.

In addition to most large retailers in the relevant retail sectors, around 7,000 independent retailers, including many online-only stores, currently offer POS finance.

In our forecast, the outlook for the market remains positive, however, expectations for overall economic growth and hence, consumer appetite for borrowing and retail spending, are less optimistic than a year ago

The report is based on a variety of sources including interviews with senior-level contacts in the consumer credit industry and a survey of the top 1025 UK retailers to establish whether they were using this form of finance and which providers they used

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