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AM Financial Management Conference: Protect your profitability

The AM Financial Management Conference, sponsored by Grant Thornton Automotive Services, covers a broad range of subjects including financial management topics and wider dealership issues. 

The presentations are delivered by experts and are designed to equip delegates with the knowledge and skills they need to make their businesses more profitable in what, for many managers, is the most challenging time they have known.
Chairing the proceedings this year is renowned
business analyst and TV broadcaster Dr James Bellini.

He has presented The Money Programme, Tonight and
Panorama. He has a considerable reputation as a thought-provoking speaker and moderator at top-level management conferences and business schools.

Information and Skills for a prosperous future

- Plot your course through a difficult economy
- Take control of your cashflow
- Manage used car stock better
- Boost profits in your service department
- Sell more cars to ‘green’ consumers
- Control your bank charges more effectively
- Avoid falling foul of VAT inspectors
- Turn new business opportunities into gold

Take the keys to success back to your business

- Protect your profitability in key business areas
- Learn new skills and best practice techniques
- Improve your understanding of industry trends and developments
- Identify new business strategies for your dealership or group
- Take away some ‘quick wins’ you can start applying immediately

Key speakers at the conference

Bellini will open the conference by highlighting some key economic trends and forecasts for the short and medium-term, to help delegates with their planning. 

Paul Burrows, a partner in the Grant Thornton auto team, will look at the basics for success and the shape of things to come. Ridgeway Motor Group’s chief executive John O’Hanlon will build on this by describing how his organisation manages its cashflow in practice – including the levers to good cashflow and major cashflow KPIs.

Nigel Ruddock, head of the Grant Thornton automotive team, will consider the current issues affecting the global market and its impact on the sector. He will give pointers for the likely outcomes for the UK motor retail industry. 

The conference will also explore some key banking and taxation issues. Andy Foxall, of HM Revenue & Customs will help delegates to avoid falling foul of a VAT inspection by highlighting the main problem areas typically uncovered during a dealership inspection.

Keith Parry, of Barclays Corporate, will give some practical tips for improving delegates’ relationships with their bank, and look at how best to reduce their costs of borrowing.

In additional to specific financial management topics, the conference will address wider dealership issues.

Colin Bruder, of Network Automotive, will look at the rise of the ‘green’ car buyer and how dealerships and groups can capitalise by connecting with them in sales and marketing activities.

Jeff Smith, author of the best-selling KPI Book, will show delegates how to improve performance with
practical tips and techniques.

“The difference between success and failure is being in possession of the right information and having the ability to take action,” he said.

The way that stock is managed can make the difference between success and failure of the business overall and delegates will learn some best practice strategies to help them stay in profit.

Finally, John Madejski – the man who built up the Auto Trader brand into a £175 million business – will reveal what drives him to keep looking at new business opportunities and how, in most cases, he manages to turn them into gold. 

Accompanying him will be David Owen-Smith, the MD at – an online car sales marketplace that Madejski bought into in 2007 and which is aiming to transform the fleet and corporate car market.

The AM Financial Management conference is the only event of its kind in the industry where finance directors and senior level executives can meet up with their peers, discuss the burning issue of the day and take away some new ideas to use in their own dealerships and groups.


  • It is easy to get to the venue (the Madejski Stadium is just off the M4’s junction 11). The facilities are excellent with plenty of parking.
  • If you are serious about managing finance, don’t miss this unique event. You’ll get a toolbox of tips and techniques, the inside track on key industry issues, and a renewed enthusiasm for the business.
  • More information see or call Luke Clements on 01733 468325 or by email,

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