Plaxton in Henlys Group mega deal
If you've noticed an error in this article please click here to report it so we can fix it.
• Plaxton is paying nearly £48 million for the Henly's Vehicle Group, which comprises seven CV and 27 car dealerships and two bodybuilders.
The deal will almost double Plaxton's turnover and make it one of the country's largest motor dealers selling 60,000 vehicles annualy, with eight Leyland Daf and Iveco Ford dealerships. It will also combine the activities of Mellor Coachcraft — Henly's public service and welfare vehicles business — and Reeve Burgess, the Plaxton division which manufactures mini and midibuses, special vehicles and ambulances.
Last year, Plaxton acquired French coach maker Carrosserie Lorraine, and Plaxton managing director David Matthews is believed to be looking for further coachbuilding acquisitions. The company has been mentioned as a possible buyer for coach, bus and taxi builder Metro-Cammell Weymann, put up for sale by Laird Group.
Plaxton plans to extend its Roadlease contract hire business to the Henlys dealerships, if agreement can be reached with the Royal Bank of Scotland, which acquired Henly's contract-hire business three years ago under an agreement preventing Henlys' return to the contract hire business within five years. Matthews hopes that this obstacle can be overcome because the Royal Bank of Scotland is a Plaxton shareholder and is providing funds for the acquisition.
The Henlys acquisition will be financed by a £35 million share issue. Last year, Henlys made pre-tax profits of £5.2m on a turnover of 2262m.