Trade Me seeks to buy Motorcentral

Trade Me has entered into a conditional agreement to purchase cloud-based dealer platform Motorcentral.

Motorcentral, which operates in Christchurch, offers a Dealer Management System (DMS) that allows users to track vehicles, stock and sales online, and automatically send vehicle listings to retail websites such as Trade Me Motors, Driven and Auto Trader. The cloud-based software means users can access their database from any digital device as long as it is connected to the internet.

Today, 505 dealers across New Zealand use the DMS, and Motorcentral managed $1.8 billion in vehicle sales in the past year.

Head of Trade Me Motors Alan Clark said Motorcentral was a great business. “We think they’re a real well-run team,” he told Autofile. “They understand very very closely the needs of dealers. They’ve built great software which has a fantastic amount of functionality.”

Director Mena Eskander said that Motorcentral has been approached in the past, but it was with Trade Me that he felt satisfied an acquisition would positively impact the key sectors of the business, and the Motorcentral team will remain with the company.

“We will continue on to play a big part of the business, as we have been, and we will continue to be with these people knowing that we have not sold them short.”

Clark also said it will be business as usual for customers. “There won’t be a huge amount of integration,” he said. “They’ll be separate companies and we intend to let them run as they are.”

The sale is subject to approval from the Commerce Commission, who provides an “indicative timeline” of 40 days for assessing a clearance application.

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