A NORTHERN Irish dealership group today revealed plans for a £5 million multi-franchise complex in Newry.
The state-of-the-art facility being constructed by Shelbourne Motors will create 60 new jobs when it officially opens in early 2019 with an additional 100 people needed during construction.
News of the project comes as the company celebrates its 45th anniversary.
The purpose built 50,000 sq ft development, designed by Clarman Architects, includes four new car showrooms, new car handover bays, a lounge-style waiting area with cafe, used vehicle spaces and customer car parking spaces.
It will also have Northern Ireland’s first drive-through service centre with a 28-bay service workshop that will provide customers with a fast and convenient servicing experience with an emphasis on quality and efficiency.
Speaking about the major expansion into Newry, Paul Ward, director of Shelbourne Motors, said: ‘This is a significant investment in the future growth of our business as we celebrate our 45th anniversary.
‘This modern, multi-franchise complex, along with the appointment of a dynamic and experienced team of 60 new staff, will further strengthen our position as one of Northern Ireland’s largest family-owned vehicle retailers.’
Shelbourne Motors was founded by the Ward family in 1973 and employs more than 130 people at its nine-acre Portadown headquarters. It operates Toyota, Renault, Nissan and Dacia franchises, as well as a used car supermarket, accident repair centre, vehicle hire division and valet centre. The business sells more than 4,000 new and used cars each year.
Ward added: ‘We have come a long way since we launched our first car dealership in January 1973, which today is the longest established official Toyota franchise in Northern Ireland.
‘Since then we have gone from strength to strength, adding Nissan, Renault and Dacia to our franchise network. We have also invested heavily in recent years in state-of-the-art showrooms for each franchise at our Portadown site, as well as a large-scale used car supermarket and an award-winning accident repair and valet centre.
‘We are always looking to the future and our investment in this new state-of-the-art complex in Newry, with its significant focus on maximising the customer experience, is the next step to ensuring we grow our position within the local automotive retail and aftersales sector.’
With an image of the new showroom in our picture are Richard Ward, sales director; Caroline Willis, finance director; and Paul Ward, sales director.
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