Alphera Financial Services, the independent finance provider owned by BMW Group Financial Services, has set a record breaking year in 2013, according to director Andy Gruber.

Alphera has written more business in 2013 than in any other year since the company began in 2006.

Alphera did not provide exact figures but said it had recorded ‘double-digit growth over the past 12 months’, including 40% growth in the most-recent quarter-year and record breaking monthly figures for each of the last four months of 2013.

Finance askew

Although Alphera operates as finance partner to Aston Martin, with Gruber also over-seeing Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Financial Services since October, the company said the success came despite "downward pressure from captive finance" on the F&I market.

"While we’ve had a record-breaking year in 2013, following the positive growth curve of new and used car sales, we need to be aware that the F&I market continues to be skewed somewhat by the strong captive support retailers enjoy from manufacturers’ artificially low rates of interest," said Gruber.

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"We have been successful by working smarter with dealers, helping them to secure sales by developing financial packages that make new or used car ownership affordable to drivers. We’ve worked hard in 2013, helping dealers to use traditional products such as PCP in new ways; supporting not just new but used car sales with this flexible financial solution. Looking ahead, we can see the market moving further away from the tired, five year, hire purchase model, adopting innovative new acquisition methods that are still financially prudent."