Umesh Samani at UCA 2023Umesh Samani at UCA 2023

Used Car Awards

IMDA founder Umesh Samani scoops Lifetime Achievement honour at Used Car Awards

  • Umesh Samani wins Lifetime Achievement trophy at Used Car Awards
  • IMDA founder honoured for commitment to helping others
  • He tells how he was dumbfounded when his name was read out

Time 8:27 am, November 28, 2023

Used car industry legend Umesh Samani said he was left speechless when he was announced as this year’s Lifetime Achievement trophy winner at the Car Dealer Used Car Awards last night.

The Independent Motor Dealers Association founder drew rapturous applause from the hundreds of attendees at the event, held at The Brewery in London, as he went up to collect his award from Adrian Wilmore, group director of UK sales for category sponsor GardX.

Host Mike Brewer – TV’s Mr Wheeler Dealer – told the crowd: ‘This year’s recipient has been running their own successful used car dealership for nearly 30 years.

‘They have collected numerous accolades from us in the last decade, being celebrated in particular for their customer care and social media.

‘But it’s their commitment to helping other independent used car dealers that really impresses.

‘Our winner was a founding member of the Independent Motor Dealers Association – or IMDA – that has helped hundreds of like-minded used car dealers to come together, share their experience and support each other.’

Mike Brewer, Umesh Samani, Adrian Wilmore, UCA 2023

Mike Brewer, left, Umesh Samani, and Adrian Wilmore

Samani, who established his Stoke-based dealership Specialist Cars in 1997, said afterwards: ‘I had no idea and didn’t think I’d be getting anything like this tonight.

‘It has just left me totally speechless and everyone would have noticed on stage! I honestly didn’t know what to say genuinely. I have no words for it.

‘I wasn’t expecting any awards this evening. I came for a good meal, a good evening out and a good party, so to walk away with the Lifetime Achievement award is incredible.

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‘I don’t think I deserve these sorts of things. You see people who have spent all their lives doing this and I guess I have spent my life in this industry, but it’s just not something that I expect of myself.’

Images: Kevin Bennett


John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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