Manheim has today announced the acquisition of Motors.co.uk, the UK’s second largest online used vehicle classified business, from DMGT (The Daily Mail and General Trust plc).
Manheim Chief Executive John Bailey stated:
“As is well known in the industry, Manheim’s unique range of services covers extensive wholesale remarketing and for the past 15 years we have also been delivering used vehicle marketing solutions for manufacturers and retail dealers. It has been our stated strategy for some time to further facilitate the links between the wholesale and retail markets and ensure our customers can take full advantage of the obvious synergies. Through our Manhiem360 proposition, our dealer customers can look to us to supply them with their wholesale vehicles and then actively support their retail activity to ensure maximum effectiveness. It’s all about making it easier for all of our customers, across all markets, to buy and sell used vehicles as efficiently as possible. The acquisition of Motors.co.uk is a significant and important investment for us and it fits perfectly within our evolving portfolio of products, particularly as the digital marketplace becomes ever more influential.”
Bailey went on to say:
“We have been watching the online classified business here in the UK for some time and we’ve had a growing presence in this important market with our own sites All Approved Cars and, more recently, Carmony. In the USA Manheim is by far the market leader, owning the US Autotrader.com* which consistently lists over 2.7 million vehicles. In just five years Motors.co.uk has built up a substantial presence and great reputation in the UK and the opportunity to acquire them has come at a perfect time for us, as we look to expand our services in this space.”
The company has announced that all Motors.co.uk employees will transfer to Manheim and the business will sit within its Manheim Retail Services area however there are no immediate plans to change the day to day operations.
In addition to Motors.co.uk the acquisition also includes the associated businesses of automotive web and photography specialist Auto Exposure, as well as Complete Automotive Solutions which provides customer contact management and showroom marketing products for retail dealers. Before the acquisition, Manheim already supplied used vehicle marketing services to over 3,000 dealers, i.e. over 60% of the UK franchised dealer network and these acquisitions will further enhance that customer reach.
Motors.co.uk Chief Executive Garry Hobson said:
“We are all extremely excited about being part of the world’s largest automotive services provider and, in particular, to have access to the online classified media expertise within USA Autotrader.com*. The Manheim brand, coupled with the extent of its services and customer base provides us with a unique platform on which to really build our business. One of the first compelling opportunities will be to combine the Motors.co.uk used vehicle listings with those offered through Manheim’s ‘approved used car’ portal, Carmony. This should immediately create an available selection of over 230,000 retail quality vehicles for consumers to browse in a highly interactive online environment. For dealers and manufacturers it’s a great route into the private motorist and one which will be fully supported by an extensive range of value-added, consumer related marketing services.”
* Autotrader.com is based in the USA and is owned by Manheim Inc. It has no connection with the UK business of the same name.