Dealership group SG Petch saw its pre-tax profit soar by 443 per cent to more than £2m last year, thanks to the furlough scheme.
In its latest annual report and financial statements, filed with Companies House, the family-run new and used car business said it made £2,023,153 profit before tax for the year ended April 30, 2021 versus £372,636 during the corresponding period in 2019/20.
Turnover, meanwhile, rose by 0.8 per cent from £144.7m to £145.9m. Its staff headcount, meanwhile, went down by 10 to 315 during the year.
The report, signed on behalf of the board by company secretary Simon Rees, acknowledged the help given by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, with government grants amounting to £2.078m. It received £552,532 the year before.
SG Petch said the grants related to furloughed employees as well as similar grants to support businesses during the pandemic.
The directors called it ‘a pleasing performance under very difficult trading conditions’, adding that they were ‘pleased with the overall results and recognise the contribution made from managers and staff in achieving these results in very challenging circumstances’.
The Darlington-headquartered company was established in 1977 and has grown to become a multi-franchise car and van dealership that has branches in Darlington, Durham, Middlesbrough, Richmond, Sunderland and York.
The brands it represents comprise Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Hyundai, Isuzu, Jeep, Kia, Mazda, Nissan, Peugeot and Seat.
It said its new showrooms in Sunderland and Middlesbrough South Bank, the latter of which opened the previous year, had helped offset the impact of the pandemic.
Looking ahead, the company aims to capitalise on the line-up of EVs offered by the franchises it represents, with the report saying they ‘provide an excellent opportunity for continued growth’.
It added that the strong used car market would also allow it to maximise profit per unit.
Picture via Google Street View