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May 1, 2008updated 12 Apr 2017 12:03pm

Retailer buys leasing business from Bramall & Jones

Bramall & Jones, the Harrogate-based dealership, is selling off parts of its company in an effort to consolidate dealerships in South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, and its vehicle leasing business Lookers, the UKs second-largest motor dealer group, is set to acquire the entire share capital of Bramall & Jones VW Ltd for £2m, while the Sytner Group has bought Bramall & Jones Derby, which includes one Audi dealership, for an undisclosed seven-figure fee. This leaves the Bramall & Jones Group with one remaining business, Bramall & Jones Lincoln, which has three Audi franchises

By Katherine Gregory

Bramall & Jones, the Harrogate-based dealership, is selling off parts of its company in an effort to consolidate dealerships in South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, and its vehicle leasing business.

Lookers, the UK’s second-largest motor dealer group, is set to acquire the entire share capital of Bramall & Jones VW Ltd for £2m, while the Sytner Group has bought Bramall & Jones Derby, which includes one Audi dealership, for an undisclosed seven-figure fee.

This leaves the Bramall & Jones Group with one remaining business, Bramall & Jones Lincoln, which has three Audi franchises. 

Lookers will gain an extra two Volkswagen sites, bringing its total number of VW outlets to 11, as well as entry into the contract hire market with a fleet of 1,500 vehicles. The new dealerships will operate as Lookers VW in Great Britain, and as Charles Hurst in Northern Ireland. 

Lookers’ acquisition of Bramall & Jones comes as no surprise; the majority shareholder and founder of the company, Tony Bramall, is also a non-executive director of Lookers, with a stake of about 20 per cent. The two groups further consolidated their relationship last week when Lookers appointed Peter Jones, co-founder of Bramall & Jones, to the position of operations director in its motor division. Completion of the sale is expected for May 1. 

Meanwhile the Derby Audi business will continue as normal and retain its 75 staff. The only difference will be in public signage identifying Derby Audi as part of the Sytner Group. Commenting on the sale of its Audi dealership to Sytner Group, Bramall said: “The disposal of the Derby dealership was purely for geographical reasons.”

Bramall, a veteran figure within the motor industry, started the Bramall & Jones business in 2004, after selling his CD Bramall chain to Pendragon for £230m. Prior to the sale, CD Bramall was the UK’s fourth largest motor retailer with 110 dealerships and a contract and leasing arm of 7,000 vehicles.

There is industry speculation that the sale of Bramall & Jones is part of a strategy to wind down the business.

Motor Finance Issue: 42 – April 08 by Katherine Gregory , Published for the web: April 23 08 11:15 Last Updated: April 24 08 10:48

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