Vertu Motors acquire Bradford and Bury showrooms worth a combined £7.9m

Gateshead-based car retailer Vertu Motors has added Land Rover and Jaguar businesses to its growing national portfolio

Robert Forrester, CEO of Vertu Motors
Robert Forrester, CEO of Vertu Motors

Car retailer Vertu Motors has acquired two dealerships in a move worth £7.9m.

The Gateshead-based group, which was set up as a vehicle to buy showrooms across the country, has bought Bury Land Rover and Bradford Jaguar.

The AIM-listed firm agreed a £7m deal with subsidiary of Pendragon PLC to acquire Bury Land Rover, which operates from leasehold premises and last year generated revenue of £41m and EBITDA of £1.5m.

Vertu said the move would develop its representation of Land Rover across the North as the business will operate under its Farnell Land Rover fascia and management structure.

The group already operates Land Rover showrooms in Nelson, Bolton and West Yorkshire, under the Farnell name.

In Bradford, Vertu negotiated with a subsidiary of Lancastle plc to buy the loss making Bradford Jaguar business, which operates from a leasehold property.

The £900,000 deal, which is expected to close in the next couple of weeks, will be settled in cash from the group’s reserves.

Last year the dealership generated revenues of £14.7m and a loss of £0.15m.

In a note to Vertu Motors shareholders, chief executive officer Robert Forrester, said: “Since 2013, the board has considered it strategically important to balance the Group’s representation of volume franchises, with increased exposure to premium franchises.

“Today’s announcement is a further step along this path with further extensions of our Farnell Land Rover and Jaguar brand.

“Bury Land Rover is an earnings enhancing acquisition that will further support the profit growth of the Group in the short and medium term. Bradford Jaguar will complement our successful Land Rover operation in Bradford and will strengthen our Farnell brand in the North.”

In a trading update in March, Vertu’s board said it expected total group revenues, including acquisitions, to rise 17.8% in the year to the end of February, 2015.

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