Used dealer turns losses around with a bounce back to profit in 2023

  • 11-site car supermarket group makes £2.4m profit in 2023 after loss previous year 
  • Directors say they focussed on returning to profit last year
  • Improved prep costs and car buying service from public helps boost numbers

Time 9:09 am, July 8, 2024

Used specialist bounced back into profit last year, reversing its loss-making year in 2022.

New accounts just posted for parent company Motor Depot Limited show the business turned a £1.4m loss in 2022 to a £2.4m profit before tax last year.

Directors said they had been focussed on turning the business around and were ‘particularly pleased’ with the result as the year had got off to a ‘slow start’., which rebranded from Motor Depot Ltd, in 2022 operates 11 showrooms in the UK in Hull, Hessle, Birmingham, Grimsby, Barnsley, Newcastle, Scunthorpe, Stoke, Sheffield, Preston and Lincoln. 

It closed its Worksop site during the year and avoided making redundancies by transferring staff to other sites.

Accounts for the group show turnover dropped in 2023 to £340m, a 7.3% fall on the £366.7m bought in the year before.

It also sold less used cars, down from 19,807 in 2022 to 19,308 in 2023. 

Directors said: ‘The trading performance of the company improved substantially from the prior year in terms of profitability, despite a slight reduction in unit sales and revenue for the year. 

‘This was a result of a deliberate focus on reinstating profit for the year as a priority by the directors and senior management.

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‘The return to profitability was particularly pleasing given the slow start due to the challenging economic and market conditions in place at the end of September 2022.’

The company said the improved availability of cars helped as did its car buying service which boosted the firm by delivering higher margins.

‘There was also improvement in the costs associated with the refurbishment of the vehicles, helped by the opening of our new purpose-built refurbishment centre in Hull in December 2022, and coupled with savings in transport costs due to lower fuel prices,’ added the firm.

‘Overall, the directors were pleased with the improved performance for the year and welcomed the efforts of the senior management to focus on a return to profitability over unit growth.’

Directors did not recommend a final dividend. As of the end of its financial period, September 30, 2023, Motor Depot Ltd employed 489 people.


James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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