Shareholders back £397m car retailer deal

The shareholders of Nottingham car retailer Pendragon have voted overwhelmingly to back a £397m deal to sell the firm’s UK motor and leasing business at a General Meeting held on Wednesday (October 25).

Some 98.2% of shareholders backed the major deal, which will see Lithia UK Holdings, a subsidiary of Lithia Motors, take over Pendragon’s retail brands in the UK.

The boards of Pendragon and Lithia Motors had previously agreed the terms of a strategic partnership with Lithia, including the rollout of Pinewood, the company’s dealer management software (DMS) business, to Lithia’s existing 50 UK sites and the creation of a joint venture to accelerate Pinewood’s entry into the North American DMS market.

Earlier this month, a joint bid by Sweden’s Hedin Mobility Group and Leicester-based PAG International, which owns the Sytner brand, withdrew their £447m offer for Pendragon, which runs the Evans Halshaw and Stratstone outlets.

Meanwhile, US firm AutoNation’s £447m offer for Pendragon was withdrawn last week.

Pendragon said the deal is expected to complete before the end of the year.