New models in H R Owen franchises later this year will bolster margin performance, but new car sales remain significantly lower than last year.
Chairman J P MacArthur said that the group’s expertise in the new vehicle export market for certain brands had meant strong revenues from the Middle East and Africa, particularly thanks to the beneficial currency position.
Its used car business was strong in the first four months, said MacArthur, but the market is now suffering from a shortage of high-quality used car product, with values significantly increasing for most of H R Owen’s brands.
Meanwhile, commission earned from finance for new and used car sales is much lower than in previous years, as credit and margins continue to be tight.
MacArthur said H R Owen’s aftersales business is proving strong due to additional capacity provided as a result of the reogranisation of eleven service franchises in London, which included new facilities opened for Ferrari and Maserati last year.
He also announced his retirement as chairman of H R Owen. Ramon Pajares, senior independent director, will hold the position until a new chairman is appointed to the role.