The business has purchased the site of a former car dealership at St Mary’s Way in Oldham for an undisclosed figure and following a £350,000 refit, the new dealership is expected to open in October 2013.
Trading as Vantage Hyundai Oldham, the new centre will be expected to sell 800 new and used cars each year, contributing an additional £10m to the Meridian Motor Group turnover. The Oldham dealership will create 25 permanent jobs with roles at the site ranging from sales and servicing, to valeting and management.
The property purchase is Meridian’s eighth deal in ten weeks as the business looks to increase its presence in existing territories, whilst expanding into new markets.
The growth of Meridian mirrors the recent revival in the fortunes of the wider automotive industry, which saw a 12.7 per cent increase in new car sales this month (August), prompting industry bodies, such as the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, to increase forecasts for the year.
Commenting on the announcement, Andrew Mallory, operations director for Vantage, said:
“This expansion will significantly strengthen our presence in Manchester, providing customers in places like Oldham, Rochdale and Tameside the convenience of a Hyundai centre near them.
“It’s also great to be able to bring this site back to use again after years of being derelict and to be able to create new jobs.
“We opened our first dealership in Salford two years ago and since then we’ve had a really positive response from customers, so much so, that it now makes sense to open a second dealership in Manchester to enable the business to continue to grow.
“We are still the only Hyundai dealership in the area and in Hyundai we have a manufacturer that has similar ambitions to match our own to grow their national footprint.”
Occupying a prominent corner position on St Mary’s Way, the site was previously home to a Volvo car dealership. However following the closure of the business five years ago, the site has been left unused.
Meridian Motor Group opened its first Hyundai dealership in Salford in 2011 and following the success of this site, the business has identified further opportunities for growth in Greater Manchester.
Meridian is based in Harrogate and, after a period of significant growth, now employs over 350 people at 14 dealerships across Yorkshire, Lancashire, Greater Manchester, the Lake District and the West Midlands.