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Heritage Automotive cuts expenses to drive five-fold profit growth in 2021

Heritage Automotive's Volkswagen dealership in Weston Super Mare

Heritage Automotive highlighted the role played by “much-improved margins” and reduced administrative expenses as it recorded a five-fold increase in pre-tax profits in 2021.

The Wiltshire-based AM100 car retail group succeeded in growing its turnover 3.9% from £169.5 million to £176.1m in the period to December 31, 2021 despite disposing of its Cheltenham Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) dealership to Marshall Motor Group.

An £823,000 reduction in administration expenses resulting from the transaction and its integration of the Blade Motor Group Skoda dealership into its existing Volkswagen dealership in Weston Super Mare, meanwhile, helped pre-tax profits grow from £534,000 in 2020 to £3.33m.

Heritage also reported a gross profit margin up from 9.4% (2020) to 11.1.

The changes offset a reduction in government COVID-19 support, which dropped to £510,000 from 2020’s £1.98m.

Its results statement said: “The directors are encouraged by the current progress and the commitment demonstrated by the Heritage team.

“The company continues to trade profitably, is well funded and will continue to capitalise on new business opportunities as they arise.”

Originally founded in 1996, Heritage was bought by former Colborne Garages owners Richard Neulander and John Walsh in 2016.

The business has risen to the top half of the AM100 franchised dealer groups since acquiring Blade Group in 2019.

A partner with Volkswagen Group, it also holds JLR and Honda franchises plus retails multiple motorcycle brands.

This year the group also became an franchisee of the Ineos Grenadier 4x4.

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