The new MD at DAF dealer group Imperial Commercials has promised continued investment in the business, as well as possible acquisitions.
Matt Lawrenson (pictured), who has taken over from Ian Oakes, joined Imperial Commercials in 2002 as financial controller, and later became general manager for the MAN franchise and then for DAF, both in Derby. In 2006, he became regional director for DAF at Imperial Commercials, and his most recent role was as divisional director for Scotland and the East of England.
He told CM: “Our intention is continued investment throughout our existing portfolio of dealerships, plus expansion through acquisition.” The 47-year old, who has also become chairman of DAF’s international dealer council, will step down from his role as chairman of DAF’s UK national dealer council at the end of March.
Alan Ellison, previously parts director, becomes commercial director at Imperial Commercials. Lawrenson said: “Ian Oakes has built this business on a foundation of valuing our people, investing in our dealerships and delivering excellent service to our customers.
“As Imperial Commercials, this is very much part of our DNA and fundamental to my own beliefs and principles.” The company is extending and upgrading its Glasgow dealership, and hopes to finish by June. It includes two extra workshop bays, a complete exterior and interior refurbishment and offices and customer-facing areas.
“We are also building a brand new dealership in Gloucester, which is scheduled to open in February 2019,” Lawrenson added. Imperial Commercials Hull recently picked up a gold award at DAF’s international dealer awards in Seville and, shortly after, Dealer of the Year from DAF Trucks in the UK.
Lawrenson said: “I’m absolutely delighted and extremely proud of everyone in that business. Sukhdev Singh, who is the dealer principal for our Hull dealership, has led the business for a number of years; he is close to our people and our customers, and is in tune with the expectations of DAF.”
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