Peter Vardy enjoys six per cent profit rise to £11.3m and aims to become UK’s top digital automotive retailer

Time 9 months ago

New and used car dealership group Peter Vardy saw its EBITDA profit rise to £11.3m last year – a six per cent increase on 2018’s figure of £10.7m.

In its accounts for the year ending December 31, 2019, just filed with Companies House, the Motherwell-based automotive group also reported a 0.5 per cent upswing in turnover from £468.9m to £471.2m, which it attributed to strong aftersales revenue across all its franchises.

Profit before interest and tax, meanwhile, was £7.3m – a nine per cent rise from £6.7m in 2018.

Had the results been filed earlier, its EBITDA result would have seen it in 23rd place in Car Dealer’s inaugural Top 100 list of the UK’s most profitable dealerships.

It has six volume and six prestige dealerships, two used car supermarkets plus a heritage cars dealership across Scotland, with franchises for BMW, Mini, Jaguar Land Rover, Porsche and Vauxhall.

Underlying return on sales based on operating profit – a key industry benchmark – was 1.7 per cent in 2019 versus 1.4 per cent in 2018 when the industry average for the same period, said the group, was 0.81 per cent.

Meanwhile, Peter Vardy Group dealerships delivered average underlying profits of £581,000 each compared with the industry average profit per dealership in 2019 of £166,000.

The Peter Vardy Foundation donated more than £500,000 to good causes, including Scottish children charities.

The group also continued its support of the OneChild child sponsorship scheme, working with Fields of Life in Uganda and Rwanda.

Chief executive Peter Vardy, pictured, said: ‘We were really pleased with our performance in a challenging market and we are committed to reinvesting all surpluses back into the business for future acquisition, property redevelopment and organic growth.

‘As well as seeing a strong performance, we continued to focus on our 2020 vision of becoming a world-class motor retail organisation as measured by our partners, our guests and the communities in which it serves.

‘Our ambition is to become the number one digital automotive retailer in the UK.

‘We have continued to invest in digital software, sales structures and process throughout 2019 to ensure we maintain our competitive advantage.’

He added: ‘We have worked closely with our sister company, Silver Bullet, as a key partner in improving our digital platforms and our goal is to retail 50 per cent of annual sales via our e-commerce channel by 2025.

‘Throughout 2019, we conducted extensive research into both the motor trade as a whole and on future trends to create our 10-year 2030 plan.

‘We focused on the trends around “ACE”  – Automation, Connectivity, Electrification – which has guided our new 10-year strategy.

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‘Establishment of our 2030 strategy will lead to the group transitioning towards becoming more widely defined as a mobility provider, rather than limiting our focus narrowly to that of a traditional motor retailer.’

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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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