Inchcape plate via PAInchcape plate via PA


Inchcape posts 5% growth for first quarter as it looks to future entirely in distribution

  • Inchcape gives trading update for first quarter of year
  • Group revenue was 5% up year on year at £2.3bn
  • Figure doesn’t include retail operation, which is being sold off

Time 8:54 am, April 25, 2024

Global automotive distributor Inchcape enjoyed a 5% growth during the first quarter of the year, it announced this morning.

The UK-based company said group revenue between January 1 and March 31 reached £2.3bn – not including its retail division, which it said was now a discontinued operation following the £346m sale agreement to Group 1 Automotive announced on April 15.

In its trading update, it hailed the ‘positive start to 2024’, saying there had been continued outperformance in Europe, thanks to accelerated supply, plus more momentum in the Asia-Pacific (Apac) region including Hong Kong and Singapore.

The Apac region also benefited from acquisitions made during the previous financial year, it said.

Meanwhile, key markets stabilised in the Americas during Q1 this year, with continued growth in the central Americas being highlighted.

New distribution contract wins included Ford in Estonia and the commercial vehicle marque Forland in Ecuador.

Group chief executive Duncan Tait said: ‘Our positive start to 2024 reflects the underlying quality of our business and we have confidence in, and we have reiterated, our outlook for the year.

‘We recently announced an agreement to divest our UK retail business. This transaction will complete our strategic transformation into a pure-play distribution business which is capital-light, highly cash-generative, higher margin and globally diversified.

‘With our global market leadership position [plus] digital and data capabilities to support our OEM partners, our distribution platform is well positioned for the future, and we remain confident about the medium-to-long-term outlook for the group.’

The sale to Group 1 Automotive is expected to complete in the third quarter of this year, subject to FCA approval. Once it’s gone through, a £100m share buyback will begin.

Inchcape’s half-year results will be published on July 30, and its Q3 results will be out on October 24.

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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