Auto Trader shares accelerate on higher profits and good outlook | City & Business | Finance

Auto Trader’s shares hit a record high yesterday after it announced that its annual pre-tax profits had climbed 18% to £345.2million and that this year is shaping up well too.

The car marketplace, which floated in March 2015 at 235p per share, saw its shares briefly hit a record 831p before easing back as investors lapped up its results.

For the 52 weeks to the end of March, Auto Trader’s revenues climbed 14 percent to £570.9million. Aside from growth at its core Auto Trader business, it saw a 21 percent fall in losses at its leasing arm Autorama, enabling it to hike its full year dividend from 8.4p to 9.6p per share.

Nathan Coe, Auto Trader chief executive, said that 2023/24 was a “strong year” of financial, operation and strategic progress and this financial year had started well, and that it expects to see its profit margins rise.

“We are confident in our prospects for the year ahead and, in the longer term, we see significant opportunities to continue growing our marketplace and to move more of the car buying process online,” he said.

Despite what he called the “tight supply conditions” facing Autorama, Coe predicted that the leasing business will continue to cut its operating losses in 2024/25.

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