LOOKERS reported an excellent trading performance in the first quarter of 2013, with strong results ahead of expectations.
Investors were told the dealer group had posted profits representing a significant improvement on the same period last year.
This growth was driven by new car retails increasing by 13 per cent, ahead of the UK market at 11 per cent.
However Lookers also reported its fleet business was down 7 per cent, which it put down to a large low margin fleet deal in 2012. Lookers also reported an improvement in fleet margins this year.
In a statement, Lookers said: ‘The increase in volume is particularly pleasing given the strong comparative and is a further demonstration of our strong focus on proactive pricing, stock management, improved buying and continued investment in the group’s website.’
Meanwhile Lookers’ aftersales business increased its turnover. ‘We continue to invest in technology and procedures to improve customer retention and average sales value per customer visit, as well as further advances in improving customer satisfaction,’ said the motor group.
Lookers concluded: “Whilst economic conditions are still affecting consumer confidence, we continue to improve the operational and financial performance of the group.
‘The aftersales bias to the business and our strong performance over the last four years, demonstrates the ability of the group to perform well in a challenging market.
‘We are therefore confident that the group is in a good position to deliver a strong first half year performance in line with management expectations and make further progress during the rest of this year.’