Marshall Motor Holdings has seen “significant growth in both revenue and profitability” in the first six months of its current financial year, it said today in its pre-close statement.
It cites like-for-like revenue growth together with the contribution from recently acquired Ridgeway Garages as the driver of the growth.
The pre-close statement said: “During H1, the group's retail segment has shown significant growth in both revenue and profitability, benefitting from a material contribution from Ridgeway. Performance in the first quarter was particularly strong as some customers pulled forward new car purchases ahead of changes to vehicle excise duty which took effect on April 1 and the timing of Easter after the end of the quarter.
“As widely expected, during the first five months of 2017 the UK new car market declined, with a fall in UK registrations to retail customers partially offset by growth in registrations to fleet customers. Encouragingly, against this UK market backdrop, over the same period the group outperformed the new car retail market. As anticipated, the group experienced a like-for-like decline in unit sales to fleet customers over this period following a commercial decision to withdraw from some low margin business.”
According to Marshalls, like-for-like sales of used vehicle units during the first half of the financial year showed "good growth with a strengthening trend throughout the period, although there was ongoing margin pressure".
The dealer group said it is concious of the economic and political uncertainty following the UK referendum on EU membership and industry forecasts for continuing declines in the UK new car market.
"The board therefore remains cautious. Nonetheless, given the strong performance during H1, our current outlook for the full year is now ahead of its previous expectations.
“Overall, the group remains well positioned and continues to seek to drive further growth in its profitability and return on capital, supported by a balanced portfolio of brands, attractive geographic locations and excellent brand partner relationships."
Marshall’s will announce its interim results for the six months ended June 30 on August 15.