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Senior retail executives will gather next month to hear briefings on strategies that will help them to increase profits – interested?

Former Nidd Vale chairman Richard Jackson will outline the issues facing multi-franchised retailers at the AM Putting Profit Before Turnover conference. The event, on Thursday November 13 at the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon, Warwickshire, will tackle some of the most pressing issues facing the retail motor industry. Jackson, who now runs Mercedes-Benz of North Yorkshire, will talk to key industry players about his experiences in running a high-profile retail group, including the issues faced and how problems were solved.

Current affairs broadcaster Nick Clarke will chair the Grant Thornton sponsored event. Clarke is a veteran of a host of high profile business programmes focusing on economic, industrial and financial affairs.

The conference will brief retailers on how to boost profits following the changes to block exemption that have shaken up the sales and servicing industry. It comes at a crucial time for retailers with city investors keeping a close eye on the market following a summer of record share price rises in the sector. Leading speakers from all areas of the retail motor industry will offer analysis and insight on crucial market issues like return on capital employed and property investment.

Motor retail expert Max Warburton from Goldman Sachs will speak about how the best retailers focus on profit centres in dealerships. Ian Watson, GMAC director of invoice finance operations, will outline the issues facing commercial finance – how retailers can raise funds for showroom investment and growth. He will explain why sourcing money is no longer simply a case of borrowing cash at a set rate.

Creating a successful used car operations will be the subject of Peter McCullough's talk. McCullough, national manager retail at CAP, has extensive experience of the used car market and will be offering an insight into the future of residual values as well as how retailers can maximise their returns in current market conditions.

Experts from Grant Thornton Motor Retail will providing in-depth and informed analysis on what carmakers are looking for in dealer profitability, explaining how return on capital employed is calculated and why it is so important to manufacturer partners. Nigel Ruddock, Grant Thornton partner – motor retail, will offer analysis of franchises and assess the evolution of the market area approach, particularly with the revised block exemption rules, while colleague Paul Burrows will explain exactly what return on capital employed is, and the elements which enable retailers to achieve high returns.

Stephen Robertson will give an outsider's view on retailing and will emphasis the importance of customer relationships.The Kingfisher executive has extensive retail knowledge working for toy giant Mattel and Brooke Bond before joining B&Q. He was responsible for developing the Screwfix Direct brand and building up B&Q's retail chain.

Who should attend Putting Profit Before Turnover? Dealer finance directors, chief executives and managing directors, as well as operations directors and dealer principals who want to boost their bottom line.

Carmakers and banks will also attend. There is still time to book tickets (£249 + VAT) for Putting Profit Before Turnover. For details contact Natasha Spreckley on 01733 468272 or email: natasha.spreckley @emap.com.

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