Cazoo NorthamptonCazoo Northampton


Arnold Clark snaps up Cazoo sites in Northampton and Chertsey in ‘£10.5m deal’

  • Arnold Clark staff have been told it has bought Cazoo’s customer centres in Northampton and Chertsey
  • Boss tells team plan is to continue to rent them to Cazoo – or turn them into Motorstores
  • Deals on Cazoo sites across the country are believed to be close to completion as consultation deadline looms

Time 9:43 am, February 27, 2023

Car dealer giant Arnold Clark has reportedly splashed out on two Cazoo customer handover centres.

In a briefing note to staff sent last week, boss Eddie Hawthorne revealed the group has bought Cazoo’s sites in Chertsey and Northampton (pictured).

Arnold Clark is believed to have spent £10.5m on the two sites and plans to continue to lease them back to Cazoo.

A source told Car Dealer that if Cazoo decided it did not want to continue leasing the properties the car dealer group was planning to turn them into its own used car Motorstores.

Cazoo declined the opportunity to comment. 

‘We were told that the plan is for AC to rent them back to Cazoo and if they don’t want to we’ll just turn them into Motorstores,’ said the source.

Cazoo is in the latter stages of consultation with staff over a swathe of site closures and job losses.

In January it told employees in an online all-hands meeting, which was leaked to Car Dealer, that it planned to shut 15 of its 22 customer centres.

In the meeting, Cazoo said it would only retain centres in Birmingham, Bristol, Chertsey, Lakeside, Manchester, Northampton and Wembley.

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There are rumours circling in the motor trade that deals have been done on many of the other Cazoo sites that the online used car dealer set up as part of its rapid expansion plans.

Car Dealer revealed two weeks ago Peter Vardy was set to acquire the Grangemouth Cazoo handover site and its Livingston prep centre.

Many of the Cazoo sites facing closure were rebranded after it bought Imperial Car Supermarkets in 2020. Huge refits were undertaken as the company erected new signage and rolled out the openings across the country.

Cazoo is selling off most of the businesses it bought as it splashed out hundreds of millions of pounds of investment cash on firms it originally thought were complimentary to its used car operation.

It has sold its operations in Germany, Italy and Spain, shut down its car subscription business and is in the process of selling off a large proportion of its prep centres. Last week it sold its data business Cazana.

It comes as the used car dealer has slashed its sales forecast to between just 40-50k cars in 2023, a drop from the circa 65k it sold last year. 

At the start of the month, the business consolidated its shares in a 1-for-20 swap, but since that move its share price has plummeted again, down 40 per cent in the last month to 2.49. 

Cazoo’s current market cap is £80.1m. When it was listed it was worth £5bn. 

The consultation period with staff ends this week and an update to the New York Stock Exchange, including full year results for 2022, is expected soon. 

Arnold Clark has been contacted for comment.

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James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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