Marshall Motors continues to defy gravity with market-mauling results

Reported pre-tax profit higher, sales all round well ahead of the markets and a show of appreciation from shareholders. Not a bad reaction for Marshall Motor Holdings from the Cambridge company’s full year results to December 31.

At the time of writing today the UK share price was more than six per cent ahead to 152.80.

Despite coronavirus and imposed lockdowns MMH reported profit before tax of £20.4m (2019: £19.6m); and that on lower revenues of £2.2 billion, down 5.3 per cent year-on-year.

While total new vehicle unit sales were down 9.2 per cent this was small beer compared to a UK new vehicle registration decline of 29.4 per cent. It was a similar tale in the used sales arena – down 5.3 per cent – a huge improvement on the prevailing UK market figures.

Fast forward to the company’s war chest: MMH had adjusted net cash of £28.8 million at period end – an increase of £59.4m year-on-year. This was a result of a combination of Government COVID-19 support measures, working capital control and management cash preservation actions taken during 2020; a £120m revolving credit facility was extended in July until 2023.

No final dividend for 2020 is proposed; CEO Daksh Gupta said the board was mindful of the significant financial support received from Government measures and other stakeholders.

He said: “The unprecedented political, economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 challenged governments, businesses and individuals across the world.

“The response of colleagues across our businesses during the year was outstanding.  Despite significant uncertainty, our colleagues went above and beyond, rising to the challenges we collectively faced. 

“Their contribution to our financial result cannot be underestimated and we thank them all for their dedication and commitment during the Year. 

“Through a combination of support received from both the Government and our business partners, a number of one-off sector tailwinds and our continued and significant outperformance of the wider market, we are pleased to report an underlying profit before tax for the Year of £20.9m. Our financial position also remains strong.

“Our resilient business model, ability to adapt to changing consumer behaviours, such as those enforced by showroom closures, together with our exceptionally strong relationships with our brand partners, gives us confidence in the group’s future prospects and success.”

Read full original article »