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Bramall and Jones acquire Audi No 3

The Bramall and Jones retail network has acquired a third Audi centre to take its turnover close to £100m and is planning a four-brand group with 12 to 15 dealerships.

“We don’t intend to create ‘CD Bramall III’ but want a business with sales around £300m,” says Peter Jones, a director of the limited company founded and chaired by Tony Bramall.

After selling his group to Pendragon last February for £230m, Bramall paid £4m to buy back Audi centres at Lincoln and Grimsby in April as the nucleus for his third motor retailing venture.

Jones, former chief executive of CD Bramall, briefly occupied a consultancy role at Inchcape before joining Bramall’s new venture as a fellow director. Its latest purchase is Audi Derby, bought from Gilders.

“Audi approached us as part of the reshaping of its network and we took the opportunity,” says Jones, a former Rover executive. “We have a good relationship with Audi UK’s managing director Kevin Rose and his colleagues, and would like two more Audi centres when the chances arise.”

Bramall and Jones expect to sell 2,000 new cars from the three centres this year, which will include at least 800 corporate registrations. Projected used cars sales total 1,200 for 2005, and the intention is to grow this side of the business.

Bramall and Jones’ strategy is to develop a medium size group with outlets in north-east England, Yorkshire, the Lancashire/Yorkshire M62 corridor, Lincolnshire and the East Midlands.

The business is keen to expand its brand portfolio to protect itself during the fluctuations in fortune that affect all car manufacturers.

Tony Bramall and Peter Jones say they have talked in depth with six vehicle manufacturers and have been told they will be regarded favourably.

They expect opportunities to expand into new brands to be offered this year.

Jones will not reveal the list of manufacturers approached but Volkswagen is a potential additional brand because, he says, “it makes a great range of cars”.

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