Pendragon sees online activity grow in first quarter

Pendragon, the UK's largest franchised motor retailer, said it was trading in line with expectations in the first quarter as it continues to grow its online presence.

Pendragon, the UK's largest franchised motor retailer, said it was trading in line with expectations in the first quarter as it continues to grow its online presence.

The company said its online offering was an important driver for growth, with the number of visitors to the websites of its divisions including Stratstone, Evans Halshaw and Quicks, increasing by 20.6% during the quarter compared to the prior year.

The group's used vehicle volumes rose by 3.25% over 2012 on a like-for-like basis, sustaining the group's record of successive quarterly growth for the 15th year in a row.

New retail registrations jumped 11.2% year-on-year. Pendragon, outperformed the market, with UK like-for-like new retail sales for the first quarter of the year increasing by 16.7% over the prior year.

In the new vehicle segment, for the brands represented by Stratstone, national retail registrations increased by 14% in the first quarter while new retail sales increased by 14.9%.

For brands within Evans Halshaw, national retail registrations climbed 12.4% and new retail sales increased by 17.8%. New gross margin has rose by 20 basis points.

Quicks, the company's used car operation, improved profitability by £0.9m over the prior year driven by an enhanced vehicle margin by 430 basis points and 12.9% increase in used volume.

Earlier this month, the firm completed its refinancing, repaid its legacy debt and extended the maturity of available facilities. The new facility consists of a £175m seven-year bond and a £145m four-year revolving credit facility.

"The indicators for the market we operate within and our underlying performance are encouraging at this stage of the year," the company said.

Shares rose 2.08% to 24.50p at 15:01 Friday.

RD

Recommended

The MoneyWeek Podcast: picking stocks is fun, but you need to do your homework
Investment strategy

The MoneyWeek Podcast: picking stocks is fun, but you need to do your homework

John Stepek talks to Steve Clapham, investor, analyst and author of The Smart Money Method, about the dangers in picking individual stocks and why you…
8 Apr 2021
BP looks set to return more money to shareholders as it beats expectations
Energy stocks

BP looks set to return more money to shareholders as it beats expectations

Oil major BP is to embark on a share buyback programme after significantly reducing its debts. Saloni Sardana looks at what it means for your portfoli…
6 Apr 2021
Deliveroo has hit the market – but it’s not getting the warmest welcome
UK stockmarkets

Deliveroo has hit the market – but it’s not getting the warmest welcome

Food delivery company Deliveroo made its debut on the stockmarket this morning. But with the share price sliding by 30% straight away, it’s not made t…
31 Mar 2021
Three stocks to buy now that will come back stronger after Covid-19
Share tips

Three stocks to buy now that will come back stronger after Covid-19

Professional investor Ed Wielechowski of Odyssean Capital, chooses three compelling stocks that should thrive in a post-pandemic world.
29 Mar 2021

Most Popular

Central banks are rushing to build digital currencies. What are they, and what do they mean for you?
Bitcoin

Central banks are rushing to build digital currencies. What are they, and what do they mean for you?

As bitcoin continues to soar in value, many of the world’s central banks are looking to emulate it by issuing their own digital currencies. But centra…
8 Apr 2021
Nuclear power might never be popular – but now looks a good time to invest
Commodities

Nuclear power might never be popular – but now looks a good time to invest

Nuclear power gets a very bad press, but it is the ultimate renewable energy source. Interest in it is perking up again, says John Stepek. Which means…
9 Apr 2021
How to find companies that can thrive in the post-Covid world
Advertisement Feature

How to find companies that can thrive in the post-Covid world

Many sectors of the global economy will return to something resembling pre-pandemic status, but others will take far longer to recover.
8 Apr 2021