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City Motor Holdings in management buy-out

City Motor Holdings Ltd has completed a management buy-out (MBO) from its former owner Anthony Wickins.

Steve Hemlock, operations director and Marke Poole, financial controller, have led the buy-out with investment from RCapital, a London-based specialist investor.

The management buy-out team was advised by Darren Miller, corporate finance partner at accountants RSM Tenon. The MBO was prompted by Wickens putting the business up for sale.

City Motor Holdings employs 250 staff at three Ford retail dealerships operating under the ‘Gowrings’ name in Basingstoke, Newbury and Reading, as well as Peugeot, Citroen, Honda, Seat and Skoda dealerships operating under the ‘City’ banner at the Houndmills Autoplaza Motorpark in Basingstoke. 

The combined operation sells in excess of 6,000 vehicles and generates over £90 million in turnover each year.

Hemlock said: "Our success is built on the very highest levels of customer service and our price promise never to be beaten on price or service underpins our whole business.

"Our business culture of a local, family-run business and many of our customers and staff have been with us for many years. The opportunity for growth in the motor market is ramping up and we are looking forward to developing our businesses further in 2013.

"In many ways it is business as usual, we want to protect the future of our employees and gain full control of a business that we believe has enormous potential for growth - there are very exciting times ahead."

He said the MBO would prompt an expansion in the group, potentially within its current geographical area, and increasing its brand porfolio with current and new partners.

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