Inchcape adds LDV, SsangYong to Subaru in its NZ operations

Damien O’Carroll
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UK-based multinational automotive distributor Inchcape has expanded its local operations with the acquisition of the distribution, retail, and vehicle leasing operations of New Zealand-based Great Lake Motor Distributors Group (GLMD).

This sees Inchcape take over the New Zealand distribution of LDV (the commercial vehicle arm of Chinese company SAIC, known as Maxus in other markets) and SsangYong, alongside its existing Subaru operation, which has been the exclusive New Zealand importer and distributor of since 1992.

The deal has also seen Inchcape take over GLMD's and retail operations in New Zealand with five company-owned dealerships in Auckland, Taupo, Wellington, and Christchurch.

Current managing director of Subaru of New Zealand, Wallis Dumper, has been appointed managing director of Inchcape New Zealand and Subaru of New Zealand, to lead the local operations. Dumper has held the position of managing director of Subaru of New Zealand since 2010 after returning to the company, having previously been the business leader between 1996 and 2006.

Inchcape New Zealand says that the majority of former Great Lake Motor Distributor employees will continue with the new operation, including current general manager of LDV and SsangYong, Andrew Bayliss.

The Inchcape New Zealand head office will be operated out of the current Subaru New Zealand offices at East Tamaki in Auckland, however some distribution employees will continue to be based in Taupo, where GLMD had its headquarters.

While Inchcape has acquired the business and assets of the GLMD group (and as a result the GLMD Group companies have changed their names), a spokesperson said that the company currently has no plans for multi-brand dealerships which include Subaru with LDV and SsangYong.

“I am excited for our partnership with LDV and SsangYong, and Inchcape’s expanded presence in the New Zealand market," said Ruslan Kinebas, CEO, Inchcape APAC

"We look forward to combining our local expertise with our leading digital and data capabilities to grow the business further and deliver an enhanced experience journey for our customers."

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