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Purchases see Helston Garages grow to five BMW/Mini outlets

Helston Garages Group has increased its influence as a BMW/Mini dealer with the purchase of two outlets in the West Country, which have been added to its sales and service points with the brands in Exeter, Barnstaple and Yeovil.

The additions are a Tice and Son dealership in Dorchester, and LJ Irvine’s outlet in Bridgwater. A BMW UK spokesman says: “We did not broker the deals but we fully support Helston Garages’ acquisitions.”

He would not comment on whether BMW had wanted Tice and Irvine to be replaced, adding: “BMW views Helston as an important regional dealer partner in the west of England. There are no further plans for the group to expand with BMW at this time.”

The prices paid for the dealerships have not been disclosed. Helston Garages managing director Andrew Barret was unavailable, and no one else would comment on the group’s latest expansion.

In November’s AM100 update, Helston Garages Group was at 24 with a turnover of £300 million. BMW and Mini are now its main franchises, and others range from Ferrari and Porsche (one each), Land Rover (three) and Jaguar (one), to Chrysler Jeep (four), Peugeot (three) and Mazda (one).

Helston Garages Group is based in Helston. David Carr, its chairman, is the son of the founder.

The business was started in 1960 and Mr Carr began working there as a mechanic.

Helston Garages’ first BMW outlet was at Bury St Edmunds. This was sold in 1998, the same year as the disposal of a Honda dealership in Ipswich. Over the past decade Helston Garages Group has concentrated on developing a mixed portfolio of franchises in the West Country.

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