Pendragon profit soars, offers dividend

Car dealer Pendragon said increased demand for new cars in Britain helped drive the group's full year performance.

Car dealer Pendragon said increased demand for new cars in Britain helped drive the group's full year performance.

Underlying profit before tax jumped 18% to £36.4m in the year ended December 31st while revenue for the year increased 5% to £3.63bn. Pre-tax profit soared 58% to £37.8m.

On a like for like basis, revenue increased by £196.5m, underpinned by its used and new vehicle sectors. The car retailer said demand was fuelled by an 18% rise in visitors to its main dealer websites: Stratstone.com, Evanshalshaw.com and Quicks.co.uk.

Pendragon added that vehicle markets are recovering in the UK and in 2013 growth is expected in new, used and aftersales.

Chief Executive Trevor Finn commented: "The group had a strong second half in 2012 and is well positioned for 2013. Having strong brands and online presence is key to success in the retail market."

"The continued investment in our online strategy has established a strong platform for the business. The group is encouraged by the improvement in the used and new vehicle departments and remains on track with its debt reduction targets."

Pendragon has proposed a final dividend of 0.1p per share.

Net debt was down by £30.4m over the prior year.

CJ

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