Vertu Motors has posted an adjusted profit before tax of £28.2m (H1 FY22: £51.8m), on revenues of £2.0bn in its interim results for H1 2022.
Revenues grew 3.9% and the Group is now anticipated to be the fourth largest automotive retailer in the UK by revenues.
The Group now forecasts that full year profits will be ahead of market expectations.
On this, CEO Robert Forrester said: “I thought by now we’d see a loosening of new vehicle supply, which would put further pressure on us pricing because of supply. That did not happen. We’ve still got significant constraints on new vehicles and significant robustness on used vehicle pricing. And actually all that has done is enhance market and despite the fact we actually sold less vehicles, this actually has been a strong profit period. New vehicle margins in particular have been very strong at over £2,100 pounds and used vehicle margins over £1,500 per unit.”
Although profits are down on 2021, Forrester said that this is just the business getting back to normal costs and planning for the future.
He said: “One of the reasons the profits are down in the last year is the fact that the costs have come back into the business. So all the cost savings, such as lack of training and not having demonstrators due to the pandemic and shortage supply have now started to reverse . We have higher costs. In particular we have made sure that we are paying the right amount of money to employees to be more attractive to get new recruits because we were suffering from significant vacancies. And that worked. We now have fewer vacancies than we had; 500 down to 400, which is not far off what I would consider to be normal for a business of this size.
“We are taking the decisions for the long term. We do not make short term decisions.”