Vertu's Infiniti Centre Newcastle
Jamie Hardesty

Gateshead’s Vertu Motors in taxi operator acquisition

Gateshead-based car dealership company Vertu Motors PLC has acquired the entire share capital of The Taxi Centre Limited and Easy Vehicle Finance Limited (together “the Taxi Centre”) which source vehicles for private operators in the taxi sector.

The business which operates across the United Kingdom is located in Paisley, Scotland, employs eight people and has been established for ten years.

Total consideration, which includes £1.1 million of goodwill, is estimated at £0.7 million of which £0.2 million will be settled by the issue of 343,053 ordinary shares in Vertu at 58.3 pence per share, with the balance settled in cash from the Group’s existing resources.

The vendor has undertaken to Vertu not to dispose of these new shares for a period of 12 months from completion, except in certain limited circumstances.

In addition there is an earn-out arrangement whereby the vendor will earn 20% of the pre-tax profits of the Taxi Centre over a three year period after completion.

The assets acquired include a short leasehold office property.

For the year ended 31 December 2013, the management accounts of the Taxi Centre showed revenue of £9.7 million and EBITDA of £0.4 million.

The Board expects this acquisition to be earnings enhancing in its first full year of ownership and is confident the Vertu Group will drive future profit growth.

CEO of Vertu, Robert Forrester, said: “The Group is confident that the acquisition of this cash generative business will produce profit enhancing synergy opportunities in the supply of new and used vehicles.

“We look forward to welcoming the experienced Taxi Centre team into the growing Vertu Group.”

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