DEALER group Marshall Motor Holdings today said it had outperformed the market strongly over the past half-year as it showed a £5.1m debt had become a positive cash position of some £5m.
The company, which has 106 franchise dealerships and represents 23 manufacturing brands, is due to release its half-year results to June 30 on August 13. But ahead of that, it has issued a pre-close trading statement that said it had delivered strong cash generation and expected to report a positive net cash position of some £5m for the half-year, contrasting with a net debt of £5.1m at December 30.
It said it was achieved despite £6m paid to finish all outstanding historic defined benefit pension liabilities, the £3.5m cost of buying six Skoda dealerships, another £1.7m paid for the freehold property at Northampton Skoda, and £1.7m of incremental dividend payments after a change to the group’s dividend policy.
The statement said that not only had Marshall ‘outperformed the market in both retail and fleet new vehicle unit sales’, it had also ‘continued strong growth in used vehicle unit sales and achieved further growth in aftersales revenues’. This, it said, had ‘helped mitigate the impact of the challenging market conditions’.
Marshall, headed by Daksh Gupta, pictured, concluded the statement by saying: ‘Given continued weak consumer confidence as a result of ongoing political uncertainty over Brexit, ongoing cost headwinds for the retail sector and further potential new vehicle supply constraints in the lead up to the implementation of further emissions-related regulations on 1 September 2019, the board believes it is right to remain cautious regarding the outlook for the remainder of the year.
‘Nevertheless, the board’s current outlook for the full year remains unchanged.’
Precise figures will be given in the half-year results.