Rigby Capital unveils a new era of ESG-led IT financing

Simon Everidge, Managing Director of Rigby Capital UK

 

A new collaboration between Rigby Capital, its sister company SCC, the UK’s largest independently owned technology company, and leading asset funder, Lombard, sees the creation of a unique, one-stop sustainable technology and integrated funding solution.

The first-of-its-kind collaboration, set up initially to run for five years, will unlock the circular economy and provide forward-thinking organisations with access to true end-to-end technology services, from initial funding and installation of state-of-the-art hardware and (cloud-hosted) software, via managed services, through to the refresh, recycling and re-use of assets.

With the rise in remote and hybrid working, it’s becoming increasingly complex for businesses to manage their IT infrastructure and end-user devices. There’s also pressure to lower IT costs while reducing wastage involved in the refresh of technology assets.

On top of these factors, research from the UN Global E-waste Monitor reveals that a record 53.6 million metric tonnes (Mt) of electronic waste was generated worldwide in 2019, up 21 per cent in just five years.

It’s clearly time for a new way of doing things.

This market leading ‘as-a-Service’ proposition delivers a powerful ‘everything under one roof’ solution. It’s vendor and technology-agnostic, with a guaranteed hardware resolution service, end-of-life collection plus optional workplace solutions.

Simon Everidge, managing director of Rigby Capital UK, says the collaboration heralds a new era in the burgeoning ‘everything-as-a-service’ sector, where his company has blazed a trail for the last decade.

Simon Everidge

He said: “We know organisations want the flexibility and simplicity of a subscription model, without having huge upfront costs. Now, through our collaboration, which adds value to what we already deliver to our customers, we are able to enhance the care taken of end-of-life assets, which we will recycle, reuse or remanufacture, enabling us to avoid sending more than a million electronic devices — such as company mobile phones and laptops – to landfill over the next five years.”

Moving to a subscription-based model with a single contract for use, licensing and maintenance, for example, helps organisations manage expenditure, reduce costs and increase operational efficiencies.

The collaboration first came about a couple of years ago, when the possibility of a partnership arrangement was first discussed with the technology financing division of Lombard. Underlining the importance and value of the collaboration, this is the first time in over a decade that such an external arrangement for either party has been formed.

The challenges facing the industry today in terms of technology acquisition are based on several different elements, including driving cost efficiency and cost optimisation, getting hold of better technology at lower cost points, and reducing the risk of obsolescence – as well as driving positive ESG. The new collaboration addresses all of those challenges in tandem.

Rigby Capital provides the forward-thinking contractual and commercials structures, Lombard provides the funding, and SCC provides the technology solution that enables customers to achieve all those outcomes.

The partnership brings together the individuality, the values and the strengths of each organisation, while combining the best of them to create a new, future-proof solution which reduces cost and e-waste, generates recycling opportunities, and drives all of our collective ESG agendas.

Rigby Capital provides a vital connection point between Lombard’s asset finance appetite and SCC’s technical solutions.

Simon Everidge goes on to say: “One of the main challenges when we developed this collaboration was bringing together two very large and operationally quite different organisations. They have very similar values but different operational processes and procedures, and we have managed to combine the best of both of those under one roof. That took a lot of time, effort, understanding and collaboration by all parties to combine them in a way that works for everybody.”

The partnership brings together three different components around technology solutions, structuring capability and funding appetite, driving everything as a single solution subscription, enabling the reduction of e-waste, automatic recycling, remarketing, and reuse of old technology, and driving the ESG agenda, thereby supporting the circular economy.

Technology often has a secondary, and in some cases, even a tertiary usage opportunity. Assets are brought back into circulation through SCC’s recycling facility in Birmingham, Recyclea, and the products get reused, remanufactured, and remarketed as much as possible – and will never go to landfill as e-waste.

Where devices are refurbished and resold, waste is minimised, and materials are recycled. Assets that are beyond refurbishment, repair or reuse are disposed of sustainably, ensuring none of the parts from old devices end up in landfill. ESG compliance – and reduced carbon footprint – is evidenced by SCC’s ability to manage end-of-life asset activity down to individual devices, and report on them at granular levels of detail.

And under the scheme’s value release service, existing tech assets a business wants to keep can be purchased, releasing value back to the subscribing company over the asset’s remaining useful life.

The collaboration is also willing to dispose of any existing owned assets, without needing to be financed under the new collaboration.

This latest iteration of the “everything as a service” model is designed to create innovative funding solutions that underpin the acquisition of up-to-date technology and solutions. It provides critical value to organisations as it tries to extract maximum benefit from their technology investments, while also spreading the cost of that investment over the useful life of the solution.

“In the near future, we see more take up of ‘everything as a service’, less reliance on more traditional forms of technology leasing, a reduction in e-waste, and increasing recycling, reuse and remarketing of old assets,” said Simon Everidge.

“Everything as a Service” (XaaS) finance solutions refer to a flexible and comprehensive approach to financing various business assets and services on a subscription or pay-as-you-go basis. This concept extends the “as a Service” model, commonly associated with cloud computing (e.g., Software as a Service – SaaS and Infrastructure as a Service – IaaS) to a broader range of assets and services that organisations use to run their operations.

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