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Rybrook buys MB sites

Mercedes-Benz of North Yorkshire has become the first major acquisition of Rybrook Holdings since being formed from the remains of Ryland Group.

The group represents the prestige brand in York, Harrogate and Scarborough, and will continue to trade as Jackson Alexandra. Chairman Richard Jackson will join Rybrook as regional chairman.

Jackson’s role at Rybrook will be mostly ambassadorial; group managing director Henry Whale will have operational control, and group chairman is Peter Whale.

Rybrook, owned by the Whale family, previously operated Mercedes-Benz dealerships in the north east of England. It sold these last month to Sytner Group, together with other prestige franchises.

Max Whale, development director, says those sites were profitable and the relationship with Mercedes-Benz was always good, so the family was keen to gain a new market area. “Given the size of Rybrook currently this is an extremely important acquisition for us,” says Whale.

It already has 12 dealerships representing BMW, Mini, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, ChryslerJeep and Dodge, Honda, Jaguar and Volvo. Turnover is expected to exceed £250m in 2007.

There are no further acquisitions in the pipeline.

Neither Whale nor Jackson would reveal the sum paid. Jackson says his decision to sell allows him to benefit on taper relief on capital gains tax, and lets him focus more energy on his property business, Yorkshire Ventures. However, he has no plans to exit motor retail completely.



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