Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) is divesting its wholly-owned British dealership to its long-term distribution partner SMT.
The sale includes the distribution rights for Volvo-branded construction equipment machines, parts and aftersales in Great Britain, as well as Volvo Construction Equipment Great Britain’s headquarters in Duxford, Cambridgeshire, its nationwide operations, most other assets and the transfer of all employees.
The existing management structure will remain in place.
The deal has been signed, and will now be followed by an employee consultation period before becoming effective, with 31 August, 2017, as the expected date for that.
Volvo CE president Martin Weissburg said, “Volvo CE’s distribution in Great Britain is now in the hands of an independent and strategically-aligned distribution partner, led by an experienced leadership team.
“This move supports the general transformation programme that is improving the long-term competitiveness of Volvo CE.”
He said, “SMT is already an established Volvo Group distribution partner, distributing Volvo CE products and services in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg, as well as 18 African nations, including Algeria, Morocco and Nigeria.”
SMT is a part of the SDA Holding group, and Weissburg said that SMT had revenues of more than €350 million in 2016, and that it was a distribution partner for other Volvo Group companies.
Carl Slotte, president of Volvo CE’s Europe, Middle East and African sales region, said, “This change is an example of Volvo CE’s objective of focusing on the development of industry-leading products and services, while at the same time partnering with likeminded and entrepreneurial distribution partners.
“We feel that further growth in Great Britain is best achieved under the ownership of a strong independent dealer. We believe SMT, with its impressive record of accomplishment in the construction equipment market, is the right strategic distribution partner to grow and invest in this important European market long term.”
Nick Allen, the managing director of the British dealership, said he believed the acquisition would allow the dealership to become even more agile and enable it to continue to deliver industry leading customer service to its customers.
He said, “SMT really understands what it means to represent Volvo, so I am confident that we are in safe hands – we are excited at the prospect for developing the business further under our new owners.”
SMT CEO Jérôme Barioz said, “This acquisition is an important part of SMT’s growth strategy, and joins our successful recent purchases of Volvo CE distribution businesses in Benelux and Morocco.
“We respect what has been achieved by the Volvo team in Great Britain, and under SMT ownership we are committed to investing in its future success – one driven by offering the highest standards in services to customers.”