Car dealer Pen­dragon to axe 1,800 jobs as de­mand slows

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Business - By Alan Tovey

PEN­DRAGON is ax­ing 1,800 staff as the car dealer braces for a drop in de­mand at phys­i­cal stores.

The com­pany – whose brands in­clude Evans Hal­shaw and Strat­stone – is to cut a quarter of its work­force to save cash fol­low­ing a re­view of how it op­er­ates.

Bosses will shut 15 mostly loss-mak­ing sites out of the firm’s 160 deal­er­ships, with 400 jobs to go. A fur­ther 1,400 po­si­tions will be scrapped as it cuts back on other func­tions.

Car sell­ers suf­fered a huge blow when forced to shut up shop for weeks at the height of the pan­demic, and cus­tomers have since proved tough to lure back as fears over job se­cu­rity mount.

Deal­ers are also in­creas­ingly em­brac­ing the in­ter­net for sales, rather than re­ly­ing on their bricks-and­mor­tar sites.

Ri­val dealer group Look­ers last month said it was cut­ting 1,500 jobs, while ma­jor man­u­fac­tur­ers have either al­ready slashed em­ploy­ment or are braced to do so.

There was fur­ther bad news across the Chan­nel, as two of Europe’s big­gest car com­pa­nies posted painful half-year re­sults yes­ter­day.

Volk­swa­gen Group cut its div­i­dend as coro­n­avirus sent de­liv­er­ies of the firm’s cars slump­ing by 27pc to 3.9m over the half-year, with rev­enues 23pc lower at €96bn (£87bn). It drove VW to a pre-tax loss of €2bn com­pared with a €5.5bn profit a year ear­lier.

Re­sults were even worse at ri­val Re­nault, with the car maker post­ing a record €7.3bn loss in the first half – largely due to its part­ner­ship with Nis­san, the loss-mak­ing Ja­panese man­u­fac­turer in which the French com­pany holds a 43pc stake.

Re­nault said Nis­san ac­counted for €4.8bn of the loss, mainly be­cause of restructur­ing costs and im­pair­ments.

Ear­lier this week, Nis­san warned it was likely to re­port its big­gest-ever op­er­at­ing loss this year, div­ing 470bn yen (£3.3bn) into the red.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.