Two weeks ago, adding Audi to the list of Vertu Motors’ car dealers would have been seen as another feather in the AIM-listed company’s cap. But with the car industry reeling from the Volkswagen emissions scandal, the company’s £12.8m acquisition of SHG Holdings, a VW and Audi dealer in Hereford, raised eyebrows in the City.
Increasing exposure to the VW crisis seems a strange move; the German carmaker, which also owns Audi, will now account for 9 per cent of revenues, against 6 per cent before.
But Vertu’s house broker Liberum Capital insisted the move was “strategically sound”, in spite of the diesel car scandal which is expected to cost VW billions of pounds in fines.
The car dealership’s other house broker Zeus Capital said Vertu, which reversed 1p to 66p, will still have less exposure to VW than its peers. These include Lookers, 0.2p lower at 166.5p, Marshall Motor Holdings, flat at 181p, and Inchcape, 15.5p better off at 734.5p.