Case studies

Fleet’s strategy for generating cash surpluses

Martin Leveau, CFO of Fleet, explains how their start-up maintains a negative Working Capital Requirement (WCR) thanks to its business model and Memo Bank’s deferred debit cards.

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Deferred debiting and high limits are the main reasons why Fleet uses Memo Bank cards for equipment purchases.

Martin Leveau

VP Finance of Fleet


company logo Fleet

Fleet is a company specializing in leasing computer equipment and office furniture.

Icone Etoile 2019
Icone Employés 20-49 employees
Marqueurs Paris (75)
Martin Leveau

Martin Leveau

VP Finance of Fleet

Fleet offers a solution for leasing computer equipment and office supplies to SMEs.

Fleet enables SMBs to lease computer equipment (computers and smartphones) and office furniture instead of purchasing them. Fleet’s clients enjoy a straightforward and transparent leasing experience, akin to e-commerce: they select their equipment on a platform, sign the leasing contract, and receive their equipment within a few business days. Fleet’s platform also allows its clients to manage their equipment fleet: equipment allocation, fault tracking, renewal, etc.

Established in 2019, Fleet reached a turnover of €10 million in 2022, serving 900 clients. Fleet operates in three European countries (France, Germany, Spain), aims to expand its international presence, and broaden its product range.

Plateforme de Fleet - Partenaire Memo Bank

Fleet's clients can manage their equipment on a platform: equipment allocation, fault tracking, renewal, etc.

Fleet aims to promptly deliver its clients while optimizing its WCR

In the realm of technology companies, Fleet has developed in an uncommon manner: the start-up has never raised funds and became profitable within just a few months of its existence. The explanation lies in Fleet’s business model.

Fleet does not finance the purchase of computer equipment itself but collaborates with financing partners specialized in leasing. These partners fund the purchase and collect the rents paid by Fleet’s clients. Fleet acts as an intermediary, earning its margin on the financing at the time of purchase. Thus, Fleet’s Working Capital Requirement (WCR) is optimized.

Fleet’s success is based on a strong and advantageous promise: responsiveness. Fleet commits to minimizing the time between a client signing a leasing contract and the delivery of the equipment to them, which can negatively impact its WCR in two ways.

Firstly, Fleet may be required to purchase the equipment before receiving financing from its financial partner. To promptly deliver to its client, Fleet purchases the equipment as soon as its financial partner approves the financing. Therefore, it is not uncommon for Fleet to acquire equipment before receiving funds from its financial partner. For example, suppose Company A wants to equip its employees with MacBooks, for €6,000, repayable over 3 years. As soon as Fleet’s financing partner approves the €6,000 leasing contract, Fleet purchases the MacBooks and delivers them to Company A — even before receiving the transfer from the financing company, which takes several days to arrive in Fleet’s bank account.

Secondly, to unlock its orders promptly, Fleet makes about one-third of its equipment purchases by credit card, without benefiting from the same favorable payment conditions as invoice payments. However, Fleet often favors card payments because they are the payment method that allows orders to be unlocked as quickly as possible. Invoices are paid by bank transfers, which take longer to unlock orders.

Since its inception, Fleet has thus used bank cards to deliver its clients more quickly — but encountered issues using its cards at its traditional bank. These issues slowed down the start-up and prevented it from honoring the promise of responsiveness, which is crucial in Fleet’s value proposition:

  • The payment card limits were very low, forcing Fleet to frequently request their bank to raise them, delaying orders. Every month, Martin Leveau, CFO of Fleet, and his teams, had to send registered letters to their bank to request an increase in their card limits — requests that took several days to be processed.
  • The operation of the payment cards was “archaic” in Martin Leveau’s words: the obligation to validate payments online with a physical device that the company’s employees passed around, difficulty in creating cards and inviting collaborators to the platform, impossibility of creating virtual cards..
Martin Leveau, salarié chez Fleet, partenaire Memo Bank

Martin Leveau, CFO at Fleet.

Memo Bank's deferred debit cards enable Fleet to optimize its working capital and generate significant surpluses.

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Before Memo Bank, we used corporate cards with our traditional bank, but with a completely archaic internal process.

Martin Leveau

VP Finance of Fleet

Martin Leveau,

With Memo Bank, Fleet benefits from corporate cards that have three advantages:

  1. The cards offer deferred debit.
  2. They can be used without a limit in instant debit mode.
  3. They are associated with an expense management system.

1. Deferred debit allows Fleet to have a negative WCR

With deferred debit, Fleet’s card purchases are debited on the first day of the following month. This allows Fleet to maintain a negative WCR: the start-up collects the proceeds from the leasing contract sale before having to disburse the purchase of equipment to its suppliers.

2. The absence of a limit allows Fleet to never be slowed down and always deliver its clients promptly

Memo Bank cards can be used either in instant debit mode or in deferred debit mode. When Fleet reaches its deferred envelope, Fleet can still spend: Fleet’s cards automatically switch to instant debit mode. As long as Fleet’s account balance allows it, Fleet can make as many payments as desired with its Memo Bank cards. The absence of a limit allows Fleet to operate on a tight flow basis and make significant equipment purchases from one day to the next. Fleet is never slowed down by its card limits and no longer has to wait several days for its bank to raise its limit to purchase equipment and deliver it to its client.

3. Memo Bank cards are associated with an expense management system

According to Martin Leveau, the operation of Memo Bank cards is much more modern than what he experienced previously at traditional banks. Within a seconds, he creates a virtual or physical card, sets payment limits for employees, and monitors in real-time the expenses made with the payment cards of the entire company.

Fleet made Memo Bank its main bank

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Memo Bank was the first bank to offer free instant transfers, for very large amounts (€100,000).

Martin Leveau

VP Finance of Fleet

Martin Leveau,

Fleet is a fast-moving company and is delighted to have found at Memo Bank the responsiveness it was seeking from its bank. Another example of this responsiveness: instant transfers are available at Memo Bank at the same price as regular transfers and have a (regulatory) limit of €100,000 — whereas most banks and fintech companies charge for instant transfers or limit them to €15,000, or both. Instant transfers allow Fleet to unlock orders on invoices more quickly by sending proof of transfers in seconds to its suppliers. With regular transfers, which are still the default transfers in traditional banks, Fleet had to wait several days for a transfer to be received by a supplier and for the order to be unlocked.

Very satisfied with the use of Memo Bank’s services, Fleet made it its main bank a few months after opening its account.

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