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Vertu's acquisitions delivering increased returns on investment

Vertu Motors recent acquisitions are delivering improved profits to the acquisitive group.

The expanding automotive retailer, with a network of 82 sales and aftersales outlets in the UK, also said trading was "in-line" with market expectations.

Robert Forrester, chief executive, said in a trading update ahead of its half-year results for the six months to August 31: “We are seeing like-for-like year-on-year profit growth from new and used vehicle sales and importantly from vehicle servicing.

"This has been further bolstered by profit progress from acquisitions we have made in the last few years as they have been integrated.

"We are focused on growth and plan to use our strong balance sheet to make a number of acquisitions in the weeks and months ahead.”

Recent developments at the group include the re-franchising of the Bristol Street Motor Nation used car outlet in Doncaster in July to the Honda franchise.

This is the group’s sixth Honda car dealership and further extends the group’s contiguous Honda territory, which now stretches from Boston to Doncaster.

In August 2012 the Vertu introduced the Hyundai franchise to the Mansfield site acquired in June 2012.

This is its fifth Hyundai car dealership and complements the existing operation in Nottingham.

Also in August, the group closed two unprofitable accident repair centres, in Stafford and in Dunfermline.

Vertu now operates eight accident repair centres, all of which are profitable despite continuing volume and margin pressure in the accident repair market.

Forrester added that the group has a "strong pipeline of attractive acquisition opportunities".

The Co-operative Motor Group has confirmed Vertu is in discussions to buy three sites, Bradford, Derby and Ilkeston.

Vertu will announce its Half Year results on 17th October 2012.

> Robert Forrester's confidence in the new car market and the September plate change is the subject of the AM poll.Do you agree with his views? Vote.

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