The online car retailer Cazoo, fresh from its listing on the New York stock exchange and acquisition of Cazana, has now purchased SMH Fleet Solutions for £70m cash.
This latest expansion of its portfolio provides Cazoo with a number of significant services to help strengthen its proposition, including vehicle holding space and vehicle preparation at six locations; vehicle logistics; and an online remarketing platform.
Established in 2003, SMH Fleet Solutions has 500 staff processing 70,000 vehicle refurbishments each year from six vehicle preparation sites across 136 acres in the UK at Bedford, Gloucester, St Helens, Throckmorton and Worcester. The company also carries out 150,000 vehicle movements per year with a team of 300 logistics specialists and an online wholesale platform for used cars that pioneered studio photographed vehicles before presenting them for online auction.
Cazoo says the deal provides it with one of the most extensive portfolios of vehicle preparation sites to meet its rapid growth plans. Once fully integrated, the listed company says it will have the capacity to recondition and deliver hundreds of thousands of cars per year and store tens of thousands of cars, helping to secure its future requirements and ensure it can meet growth targets.
Alex Chesterman OBE, founder & CEO of Cazoo said: “Given strong consumer demand, the only real constraint to our future growth is ensuring that we have adequate capability to recondition, store and deliver enough cars to keep up. By acquiring SMH, this helps solve that and de-risks our future growth by immediately doubling our number of vehicle preparation sites and significantly enhancing our team of vehicle preparation and logistics staff.”
The online buying and selling platform has already sold over 35,000 cars in the UK since its launch less than two years ago and recently introduced an all-inclusive monthly subscription service for new cars. Cazoo will expand its footprint later this year in France and Germany. It owns and fully reconditions all its cars before offering them via its website for delivery or collection in as little as 72 hours.