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Club prepares to sell cheap cars

Around 1,750 franchised dealers are to have access to used cars bought at wholesale prices enjoyed by leading retail groups.

Independent Dealer Services will use its judgement to make purchases and then offer cars to members of the 'club'. IDS is the brainchild of motor trade accountant Trevor Jones who said low profitability was threatening the future of hundreds of small dealerships.

"Large dealer groups can sell used cars like the Renault Clio and at a price it costs small dealerships to buy," said Mr Jones. "We want smaller businesses to have access to attractive wholesale prices, even if they are purchasing a single car. The initial response is encouraging."

Members will pay £520 a year to join and will be limited to 10% of each block of cars to be offered by email and phone. IDS membership will be limited to Mr Jones' clients or dealerships with a franchise for which Trevor Jones & Co provides dealership compositive material.

Capital Bank Motor will provide the funds for IDS to buy stock and a Channel Isles group the venture capital. Delivery charges will be graded according to distance from Thurleigh, near Bedford, where the cars will be grouped and checked. Managing director Bob Batty and operations director Gary Beynon will head a "lean team" at IDS. Both are former Kia UK directors.

Mr Batty said: "We have many contacts to give us the best chance of making the right purchases. That is what this different from other similar businesses." Stock will be held for 60 days at the same price. He estimated IDS would need 750 to 1,000 cars in the supply chain to function.

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